Honoring Saund

Posted February 2, 2005 at 6:31pm

More than 40 years after leaving office, the first Indian-American Congressman, Dalip Singh Saund (D-Calif.), may finally be getting his due. [IMGCAP(1)]

On Tuesday, the House approved a resolution, 410 to 0, stipulating that a post office in Temecula, Calif., be rechristened the “Dalip Singh Saund Post Office Building.” The bill was first introduced in the 108th Congress.

Saund, who left office in 1962 after serving three terms, was first elected to the House in 1956. He was earlier a key figure in helping Indian Americans secure citizenship rights.

“Each of us owes a debt of gratitude to his trailblazing efforts, so that America could continue to be a land of opportunity,” said Rep. Bobby Jindal (R-La.), a co-sponsor of the bill, in a statement. Jindal recently became only the second Indian-American to serve in Congress.

Another resolution, expressing the sense of the House that a portrait of the late Congressman be displayed in Congress, was recently reintroduced by Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.).

Passing the Gavel. Last night, the Congressional Caucus on Women’s Issues held a gavel passing ceremony and reception, honoring the incoming co-chairwomen, Reps. Ginny Brown-Waite (R-Fla.) and Hilda Solis (D-Calif.), who together will lead the 68-member caucus for the 109th Congress.

The former co-chairwomen, Reps. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) and Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.), were joined by numerous guests at the Rayburn Banquet Room, including the other women’s caucus members, Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) and representatives from both Discovery Communications and the Oxygen channel.

The first meeting of the Congresswomen’s Caucus took place in 1977, and four years later the organization changed its name to the Congressional Caucus on Women’s Issues. The caucus has always been led by bipartisan leadership.

Cracker Barrel Pays, Charges Dropped. Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Inc. will give $50,000 to the University of Texas as part of deal with Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle in his ongoing investigation of a Texas PAC founded by House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas).

Cracker Barrel was one of eight companies indicted for giving to Texans for a Republican Majority PAC. The charges of illegal corporate contributions were dropped on Wednesday, and Cracker Barrel admitted no wrongdoing.

— Bree Hocking, Jennifer Lash and John Bresnahan