Questionnaire for 2020 US Presidential Candidates

HinduPACT is sending the following questionnaire to all the candidates running for 2020 US Presidential Elections.  The responses to these questions will result in a Voters’ Guide.

July 11, 2020

The earliest Hindu immigration to the US was recorded in the 1600s.  Today, it is estimated that there are close to six million Hindus in the US or close to 2% of the US population.  There are several million more citizens, who have adopted one or more Hindu sacraments and practices in their daily lives. 

From early days of farming started in Hindus have made immeasurable contributions to American society for generations. These contributions began at an early stage of America’s advancement as a global superpower, from Henry David Thoreau’s commentary on civil disobedience at Walden Pond, Massachusetts that were informed by the teachings of sacred Hindu text of the Bhagavad Gita, and the famous speech of spiritual luminary Swami Vivekananda at the Parliament of World’s Religions on September 11, 1883 opening with the famous phrase, “My brothers and sisters of America.”

Hindu Policy Research and Advocacy Collective USA (HinduPACT USA) is preparing the 2020 Hindu Voters’ Guide.  The 2020 Hindu Voters’ Guide will help the voters’ determine the compatibility of the candidates with universal Hindu values and the candidate’s views on issues that are important to American Hindus.  We intend to publish these answers as voters’ guide for the Hindu community.  The 2020 Hindu Voters’ Guide is intended for information and educational purposes, and, consistent with our 501(c)3 status will not be endorsing any candidate.

We request that [Candidate], respond to the following questions

Hindu Issues in America

  1. As a President, will you protect Hindu American constitutional and civil rights; honor the contribution of Hindu American communities across America; and create a safe environment for their growth and prosperity.

  2. Will you ensure that the Homeland Security, Justice Department, and the FBI will work closely with the Hindu Mandirs (Temples) and other organizations to ensure that they are provided protection against hate crime and discrimination?

  3. Will you ensure that the Department of Education will consult practitioners of Hindu faith to develop guidelines for state agencies? Will you ensure that the textbooks and instructional materials that promote Hinduphobia and reflect misrepresentation of Hindu dharma (faith) in school textbooks are removed.

  4. Will you defund Universities and colleges that continue to institutionalize Hindupobic teachings?

  5. Will you include Hindu American participation in national prayer meetings at the White House, and include Hindu festivals in the list of festivals celebrated at the White House?

  6. Will you Include Hindu American organizations in faith-based service initiatives and, in the dialog on interfaith, diversity and inclusion?

  7. Over 80% of high skilled immigrants who are eligible for Green Card are Hindus. What are your views on extended delays in Green Card processing times (often more than 20 years) for these legal immigrants?

Global Hindu Issues

  1. Will you promote equal rights and security for Dharmic communities (Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Buddhist) in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh? The United States has a long tradition of offering hope and safe haven to refugees and to those seeking asylum.  Will you give persecuted followers of Dharmic faiths who are minorities in these countries, asylum under the “emergency refugee protection” program?

  2. Will you work to restore Temporary Protected Status for immigrants from Nepal living in the United States?

  3. Will you promote stronger relations with India and support India’s role in a new vision for the Indo-Pacific, to counter-terrorism and advance our shared security and economic interests in the region?