From a young age, Sri Kulkarni showed leadership skills as he took on responsibility for coordinating volunteer service across local schools. He was commissioned as a Foreign Service Officer by Secretary of State Colin Powell and served his country for 14 years, with overseas tours in Iraq, Israel, Russia, Taiwan, and Jamaica.
Sri served as a foreign policy and defense advisor on Capitol Hill, assisting Senator Kirsten Gillibrand with her work on the Senate Armed Services Committee. Following the 2016 Presidential election, Sri and a Republican colleague founded a bipartisan initiative called “Breaking Bread,” which aims to reduce the partisan hostility in our society, that has been repeated in several states.
Sri Kulkarni has run a grassroots campaign with policy priorities of building and unifying his district, with a focus on relief for the victims of Harvey, criminal justice reform, health care for all and prioritizing scientific evidence over politics on addressing climate change.
Sri Kulkarni has been endorsed by US Senator Kamala Harris and the Houston Chronicle. He has raised 94% of his funds with individual contributions, refusing to take corporate contributions.
America must have a truly universal health care system, which brings down costs and ensures that no one suffers or dies simply because they cannot afford healthcare. I will advocate for a single payer system, such as Medicare for all, to achieve this goal.
Universal health care must also include access to women’s reproductive health services, contraceptives, and vaccines for diseases such as HPV, which leads to over 40,000 cases of cervical cancer a year.
Members of Congress who vote on laws that affect the reproductive health of their constituents should have an understanding of basic biology.
Congress must pass a clean DREAM Act as soon as possible as well as comprehensive immigration reform which is sensible and compassionate.
Our immigration policy must provide funding for adequate border security, punishment for employers who do not adhere to U.S. labor standards, a legal route for migrant workers, and a reduction in the red tape for highly skilled workers to come to the U.S. We must also acknowledge that there is a global refugee crisis which will create more instability and conditions for fostering terrorism if the international community does not equitably share the burden of resettling and assimilating refugees.
Our current mass incarceration is ineffective and inhumane, and I will introduce legislation to reform it. Even as overall crime has decreased, the prison system has grown, destroying families of the incarcerated, and impacting our entire society through a huge loss of productivity and an increase in the burden on public services.
America also needs a new approach to the 47-year failed War on Drugs. By treating a medical issue with a medical solution, not a law enforcement solution, we can reduce our drug addiction rate, take revenue directly away from organized crime, and free up resources for police to reduce violent crime.
Parents and community members should not have to live in fear of repeated mass shootings at their children’s schools and public gathering places. Sensible gun safety laws and regulation of firearms, such as universal background checks, bans on assault weapons, restrictions on straw purchases, and required firearm insurance, can be implemented without infringing on the second amendment.
I support working with responsible gun owners to promote meaningful gun safety reform that actually reduces violence and we challenge gun rights advocacy organizations, such as the National Rifle Association, to work with families and victims to pass real gun reform.
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THE ISLAMIC SOCIETY OF GREATER HOUSTON
River Oaks Islamic Center
3110 Eastside Street, Houston, TX 77098