Ro Khanna – the former Obama Administration official who raised an eye-popping $1.2 million in 2011’s final quarter but vowed not to run against Rep. Pete Stark – is co-hosting a big fundraiser next week for Stark.
Khanna, of Fremont, along with Hayward Mayor Mike Sweeney and the International Association of Firefighters’ FirePAC, are holding the event next Monday evening, April 30, in the Hayward Firefighters Hall. Tickets range from $100 to $2,500.
The list of co-hosts indicates Khanna is leveraging his deep connections in the Indo-American community on Stark’s behalf, though some of these names have been avowed Stark supporters for some time: Rahul Roy, Dr. Romesh Japra, Yogi Chugh, Mike Nevens, Mahesh Pakala, Anil Yadav, Joe Johal, Dr. Raj Salwan, Inder Dosanjh, and Sunny Ghai.
Khanna has held to his contention that he wants Stark’s 15th Congressional District seat, but only when Stark, D-Fremont, chooses to retire from it. Of course, that plan requires Stark to hold on to that seat this year against two challengers who aren’t willing to wait for him to give it up.
Stark already has the clear money edge, though his numbers for the first three months of 2012 were a bit lackluster. He raised $60,255 and spent $90,299 in the first quarter, but had $551,341.79 cash on hand with no outstanding debts as of March 31.
Dublin City Councilman and Alameda County prosecutor Eric Swalwell, also a Democrat, raised $100,930.24 and spent $96,592.16 in the first quarter, and had $93,311.05 cash on hand with $8,572.50 in outstanding debts as of March 31. Hayward businessman Chris Pareja, a Tea Party conservative independent candidate, raised $12,572 and spent $12,680.79 in the first quarter, and had $64.81 cash on hand with no outstanding debts as of March 31.