Himanshu “Heems” Suri, one of the members of the rap group Das Racist, has a preferred candidate to replace Public Advocate Bill de Blasio: Reshma Saujani. Mr. Suri tweeted about his support over the weekend, and writing to Politicker in an email yesterday, Mr. Suri elaborated by arguing that Ms. Saujani’s candidacy will help the South Asian community find its political voice.
“She has raised over a million dollars for this race and will be a very well resourced candidate,” he explained. “She will be investing more into South Asian turnout than anyone ever has. … We will probably have the highest South Asian voter turnout ever this year because of her on the ballot and the resources she will be putting in it. This is the most qualified and well resourced candidate from the community ever.”
This is not the first time Mr. Suri, who hails from Queens, has involved himself in local politics; he released a mixtape in an attempt to mobilize the South Asian community during the state legislative redistricting process and wrote a letter to Speaker Christine Quinn when the City Council was redrawing their own districts last year. Both times he urged lawmakers to unite South Asian communities in the new maps instead of dividing them.
For her part, Ms. Saujani released a statement touting the support and the historic nature of her candidacy.
“I’m proud to earn the support of New Yorkers like Heems who are stepping up to be a voice for their communities. Running to be the first South Asian elected in New York City is an honor, and the support has been inspiring,” she said. “The immigrant dream, the New York dream and the American Dream are one and the same, and as Public Advocate I will work every day to make that dream a reality.”
Mr. de Blasio is vacating the public advocate post to run for mayor, and a crowded field is running to replace him, including Ms. Saujani, State Senator Dan Squadron and Councilwoman Tish James.