Dec. 12, 2011 | Upstart Democratic congressional hopeful Ro Khanna, so far, is having a very good Christmas.
The former deputy assistant at the Commerce Department under President Obama--in short time--has reeled in, according to some estimations, around $700,000 for a possible run in 2014 for Rep. Pete Stark's East Bay seat in Congress.
Kavita Tankha, an influential Democratic fundraiser from the South Bay hosted another high-profile event for Khanna last Sunday featuring Rep. Mike Honda.
Tankha has supported other Indian American candidates, including Ami Bera's unsuccessful campaign for Congress last year against Rep. Dan Lungren.
The event is listed as a $500 fundraiser for sponsors and $150 per guest.
Khanna's prodigal return from the Beltway to Fremont has captured the attention of other potential East Bay pols who have long coveted the seat. Stark, who turned 80 last month, has represented the area since 1973 and plans to run for re-election next year.
Previous fundraiser for Khanna have attracted some of the Democratic Party's elites, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Gov. Jerry Brown.
The emergence of Khanna may also highlight changes in the East Bay's power structure revealed in the latest U.S. Census. Population and demographic statistics show the center of the region's traditional power structure is shifting ever so slightly towards the South Bay and inland valleys.