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Republican primaries: who is Vivek Ramaswamy, the millionaire who wants to defeat Donald Trump?

This is the surprise of a race almost won in advance. Vivek Ramaswami, a 38-year-old businessman, will face his rivals this Wednesday night during a televised debate between candidates for the Republican Party nomination in the 2024 presidential election, from which Donald Trump will be absent.

If the relatively young candidate currently poses no danger to the poll-strong former president, even though he is surrounded by court cases, he, on the other hand, could become a thorn in the eye of his more outspoken opponent. Ron DeSantis is in second place in terms of the number of votes.

In the polls, Ramaswamy (who garners 11% of the popular vote, according to a Fox News study) is indeed on the heels of Florida’s very conservative governor (16%). A recent public opinion poll even gives him an edge over DeSantis, the “anti-revival” cantor.

It must be said that in this game of ultra-conservatism, the millionaire who made his fortune in biotechnology is playing even with his direct opponent. He calls abortion “murder” and speaks out in favor of government restrictions.

In addition, he is a vocal opponent of transgender rights. He called for a ban on gender reassignment for minors and no longer using public funds to reimburse adults seeking treatment. He considers transidentity to be a mental illness and therefore wants to ban transgender people from certain positions in the military.

Fossil fuels needed for the “development of the human race”

But this desire to legislate for privacy does not stop the businessman from advocating “limited” government intervention. As such, he opposes any form of environmental protection regulation, which he qualifies as a “climate cult”, and argues that fossil fuels are necessary for the “development of the human race”.

And this “limited government” ideology, typical of the American right, is also found in Ramaswami’s economic agenda. As such, he claims he can restore annual growth to 5% by suspending taxation and US regulation, focusing again on climate action.

On international issues, his positions partially coincide with those of Trump. He intends to end the war in Ukraine by ceding part of the Donbass to Russia, while banning Kyiv from joining NATO. In exchange, he will ask Moscow to end its military alliance with China, which he considers “threat number one” to the US.

Rap past

If his program as a whole repeats the political project of the most conservative wing of the Republicans, then his profile is even more contradictory. He is of the Hindu faith and is the son of a South Indian immigrant couple. A rare combination in a party whose figureheads are usually white and Christian.

He also had a short history… as a rapper that began during his student days at Harvard, where he adopted Eminem’s lyrics under the pseudonym “Da Vek”. It’s ironic that hip hop culture is largely taken over by the American left, political opponents of the Ramaswamis.

Another notable fact is that the millionaire Elon Musk lauded is a newcomer to politics, unlike some of his competitors such as former Vice President Mike Pence. And if the election of Donald Trump in 2016 revealed one thing, it’s that not being from the seraglio is sometimes an advantage.

Source: Le Parisien

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