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Impact of U.S. Presidential Elections on Indo-U.S. Relations
By Jayshree Mitra Paul
| Category: U.S. India Relations

A kind of media-made hype has invaded our lives. Will she or will he? But I feel, as November comes and goes that the US-India will not be much impacted, if at all. Both are big multicultural democracies who have steadied their relationships through past misunderstandings.


As for the candidates themselves, it seems that both have fans here. In Hillary Clinton’s case, when she was placing a wreath at Mother Teresa’s coffin in then Calcutta, I remember people clapping. It was 1997, and a funeral! Also, there was this not-quite-remote town, where hundreds of Trump fans were doing a yagna for the success and well-being of their Donald Trump! Relations will not deteriorate; at least, I am sure. Even here, there are admirers of Clinton’s hairstyle. I got praised for my flat heels recently, for the first time in two decades, because Clinton opts for flats! And the Good Wife role is something the middle class looks up to. As for Donald Trump, the earliest outsourcer who created so many jobs, here, and yet, the ultimate self-made man who displays a frankness unlike seasoned, dissimulating politicians – he, too, has his adherents, though they may not be voters.


On a more serious level, in the US, as I feel, neither the Democrats nor the Republicans can alienate Asians. The USA has to buttress itself against China, so India is the option now, rather than Pakistan, whose development of an economic corridor with China causes concern.


There will be some sort of influence or impact on the election expenses. In India, our political parties are funded by donations from business houses, or, as Leftists give out coupons, money trickles in. The US system of dinner-donor might influence the people managing election campaigns more. The Aam Aadmi Party had this ten thousand rupee thali system that they floated in Karnataka. Fundraising ideas do impact Indian life, because the professional image consultant of today has overtaken the family well-wisher.


Minor irritants are normal in any healthy, living body. So, too, in Indo-US relations, as the Devyani Khobragade episode – but if exposed, often victims prove to be otherwise – and mature relationships can weather all this and more. Because, carrying over of imperfect sympathies from yesteryears is now past. Commercial interests and geopolitical interests are of utmost concern today. Terrorism is something that can only be exterminated through collaboration between the two largest democracies. India is involved in protecting the environment as we are all a part of nature. Cooperation will be ushered in through collaborative removal of trade constraints. It appears that both the Democrats and the Republicans are favourably tilted towards our country.


So, as things go, the Indo-US relations will be very little impacted by the US Presidential elections.

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