On November 8, 2022, Democratic State Representative Shri Thanedar won the seat for the newly redrawn Michigan 13th Congressional District. The district is heavily Democratic consisting of 45 percent Black and 9 percent Latino residents. The redrawn district stretches roughly from 7 Mile Rd and Livernois in Northwest Detroit around through all of the Grosse Pointes and all of Southwest Detroit to Lincoln Park, Ecorse, River Rouge, Southgate, Wyandotte, Allen Park, Melvindale, Taylor and Romulus.
Rep. Thanedar is an immigrant from Southern India and has faced many challenges from the Immigration Services. As a result of his life experiences, he says that he understands the challenges of Mexican and Latin American immigrants to the United States.
The newly elected Congressman supports humane treatment and a respect for human rights at the U.S. borders. He says that the U.S. is long overdue for comprehensive immigration reform. He has been appointed in the U.S. House of Representatives to the Homeland Security Committee where he will be dealing with these issues.
Representative Thanedar also supports the Dreamers and wants them to have a path to citizenship. He would also like to see a more sympathetic approach to Cuba, and he said that he understands Mexican President Lopez Obrador’s position that the U.S. not be too harsh toward Venezuela and Nicaragua.
As an immigrant, Rep. Thanedar sees “strength in our diversity,” and he wants to see a society based on equity. In the last session of Congress, he supported the Democrats’ George Floyd police reform legislation. Mr. Thanedar also supports Medicare for All.
Rep. Thanedar says he’s “first of all a Democrat” and wants to work with all the Democrats from Michigan. He says he’s very pro-union and wants to elevate mental health issues, as he tried to do when he served in Lansing. He also hopes to have perfect attendance in Washington D.C. as he did in Lansing.
The Congressman’s other big issue is poverty. “I grew up poor, and I know how hard that is on a family.” He says that he will support legislation to give everybody a chance to succeed in life.
Rep. Thanedar recently participated in a 45-minute phone interview with this reporter and EL CENTRAL Managing Editor Robert Dewaelsche. He says he wants to come out and meet with people and he is familiar with Southwest Detroit because he had a campaign office on W. Vernor. He welcomes everybody to visit his district office in Greektown in downtown Detroit and to contact him with their concerns.
Contact Rep. Thanedar at his Detroit office located at 400 Monroe Street, Suite 420, Detroit, MI 48226
Phone: (313) 880-2400
Steve Walker has been active in politics since 1962. He is a retired Political Science professor from Wayne County Community College, a member of the state Democratic Hispanic Latino Caucus and a long-time treasurer of the Wayne County Spanish Speaking Democrats and contributing writer for EL CENTRAL.