Pakistani-American Asif Mahmood Concedes in Key US Congressional Race

By A Correspondent

Pakistani-American Democrat Dr. Asif Mahmood conceded the race for the 40th US Congressional District to Republican incumbent Young Kim, who has a 17-point lead in the latest vote count on Friday, November 11.

In an e-mail, Mahmood said he had called Kim on the morning of Friday (November 11). “I know this campaign did not go as we had hoped, but I wish for Young Kim’s success because she will represent all of us in this district: Democrats, Republicans, and Independents,” he said.

A day earlier, the Republican declared victory, saying: “I will fight every day to be your common sense voice in Congress, break through the partisan gridlock and deliver results for #CA40.”

Mahmood was trailing his Republican rival and incumbent Rep. Young Kim in what appeared to be a competitive race in the beginning. But Kim’s lead gradually increased.

The Korean American Kim campaigned against illegal immigration and inflation. Mahmood on his part not only campaigned against inflation but also advocated for reproductive rights. Kim had secured 117,254 votes, accounting for 58.1% of the counted vote against Mahmood’s 84,455 votes or 41.9% of the counted vote.

US Congressional district 40 district sits mostly in Orange County but also includes parts of San Bernardino and Riverside counties. It includes Downey, East Los Angeles, Commerce, Paramount, Bell, Bell Gardens, Bellflower, Cudahy, Huntington Park, Maywood, and the neighborhoods of Florence, Florence-Graham, Historic South Central, and South Park, in South Los Angeles. It is the most Latino district in the nation, at 86.5%.

Earlier, Mahmood had insisted on counting every vote but conccedeed after Kim’s lead became unsurmountable. “Every ballot should be counted and we look forward to seeing this process through,” Dr Mahmood tweeted on Nov 9.

Dr. Asif Mahmood, a pulmonologist by profession, hails from Khariyan in Pakistan. He received high-profile endorsements from top Democratic party leaders, including Vice President Kamala Haris, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Gavin Newsom.

Had he been elected, Mahmood would have become the first Pakistani America ever elected to the US Congress.

Kim, a freshman representative, is a member of the House Committees on Foreign Affairs, Science, Space and Technology, and Small Business. In 2020, Kim, fellow California Republican Rep. Michelle Steel, and Democratic Rep. Marilyn Strickland of Washington made history as the first Korean American women ever elected to Congress. In a close contest, Kim defeated incumbent Democrat Gil Cisneros by just over 1 percentage point, flipping back the House seat she conceded to Cisneros in 2018.


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