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Impact of U.S. 2016 Presidential Elections on India-America Relationship
By Dhritimaan Sharma
| Category: U.S. India Relations

Years make a name for themselves. If 2015 had been the year of Syrian war causing massive displacement and exodus of its citizens, 2014 saw Narendra Modi become the Indian Prime-minister with a thumping victory. And 2016 will be the year of the American Presidential election with its uniqueness. Many may ask what a non-American has got to do with it. On the contrary, every nation, developed or under-developed, and in turn its citizens, shall find impact of this political event. Because today, being in the good books of U.S. is politically critical for any nation.


Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton go head-to-head in this political war between the Republican and Democratic parties. Both have the same intent, of serving America, but with contrasting approaches. While Trump is playing hard ball in whatever policies he’s promising to adopt, Clinton is being much more patient and complaisant. A closer look at the former’s policies reveals a very firm and decisive attitude despite the aggressive temperament while his counterpart is probably going to run the country in a more diplomatic manner.


Trump’s regular and severe criticism of illegal immigration and being verbally contentious about foreign policies strongly represents his absolute intolerance towards anything that might harm America’s security or economy. But Clinton shows much more maturity by cooperating to work with other nations to achieve the similar goals rather than initiate an era of international political conflicts.


Thus, with Prime Minister Narenda Modi’s strong intent to improve upon foreign relations and the country being a rapidly growing economy, it is indeed a matter of thought as to the impacts of this election on India.


Trump has never been very critical towards the South-Asian nation as it has no major contributions in terrorism or illegal immigration; his prime reasons of dispute with other countries. India itself is victimized by terrorism and advocating fight against it at international forums.


Clinton, being the Secretary of State under Obama, seems highly amicable when it would come to cooperation between the two countries, just like him. Predictability and comfort quotient with her will be higher and her willingness to put collaborative efforts should be a positive factor.


Trump, too, has been complimentary towards India’s growing economy, saying it’s doing great, but just not getting the recognition. However, he had criticized India for ‘taking away American jobs’, stopped American visas for Indians only to see Americans fill up those positions, bringing into light his disdainful nature. This may severely dent the international relationship, Indian economic interest as well as the job market.


However, although Trump may not be very amiable, his intolerant behavior shall definitely boost India’s fight against terrorism. Both nations are hell-bent in stopping it and such common goals could definitely lead to a strong coalition despite the wake of political tensions. India may gain at China’s cost and Pakistan likely cease its terror campaigns.


Clinton’s much lax attitude in comparison, is more likely to work in a rut and may not be as helpful against terrorism should the Republicans have the last laugh. However, one must keep in mind that she is much more consistent, reliable and experienced when it would come to coalitions as she won’t outcast India even if it cost a little to America.


Thus, be it the Republicans or the Democrats, deep impacts are likely to be there in the relation between the two countries with both pros and cons. Therefore, it is important not to look at any individual candidate with biasness and rather, hope that whoever wins, shall work towards betterment of both the countries and a better world.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this contest entry are those of the author and do not reflect the views, positions or policies of the U.S. Government