Jun 09 2014
An Indian immigrant to the US is currently one of the highest ranking socialists in the US. Kshama Sawant, born and raised in Mumbai, has shaken up not just the Seattle City Council to which she was elected, but the political establishment that has long defended its position to lock wages into poverty levels.
Seattle’s recent legislation to raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour, despite several diluting loop holes, is the highest in the nation, and is in large part being credited to Sawant’s advocacy. Still, because of the loop holes, she did not formally endorse the bill.* The ripple effect in cities across the nation is astounding with many municipalities including New York City and Chicago considering similar laws.
Unabashed about her affiliation to the Socialist Alternative Party, Sawant has also energized the left. She spoke at this year’s Left Forum in New York where KPFK’s Alan Minsky sat down and interviewed her.
*: It should be noted that Ms. Sawant voted for the bill despite her vehement opposition to the loopholes.