(WASHINGTON) — Dr. Apoorva Ramaswamy has been active on the campaign trail with her husband Vivek, an author and businessman running for the GOP presidential ticket, along with the rest of her family.
Dr. Ramaswamy sat down with ABC News’ Linsey Davis to talk about their family, her husband’s campaign and his controversial statements.
ABC NEWS LIVE: When was the first time that, and I’m wondering if they told you or you knew he’s going to want to run for president?
Dr. APOORVA RAMASWAMY: Really just this past December. So that was when he really sat me down and said, Apoorva, I think, this is something that I feel called to do because we look at the future for our sons.
Realizing what are the things that are needed for their prosperity, for their thriving, that’s what limits them is the things that we can do as parents.
But really on the political side, and I feel very confident that Vivek, as president, will be able to give Karthick and Arjun the society that they’re going to want when they’re starting to enter high school. One where their actions are rewarded based on their merit, not based on any other aspect of their appearance or their heritage, but really what they are able to do and give to other people and whether they are able to fulfill their responsibilities.
Similarly to be able to be proud of being Americans, that would be the biggest gift that I hope Vivek can provide to future generations.
ABC NEWS LIVE: How did you initially react when he said, I’m going to do it?
RAMASWAMY: The first thing I said was, ‘Are you sure that this is the right time?’ You know, we are young. At that time, we had basically a 6-month-old and a 3-year-old. And we really thought deeply about whether this was the right thing, both for our family and whether Vivek, as a 37 [year-old], at that point he’ll be 39, would be the best version of himself for this role.
And after reflecting on it, we realized that it really is now as a young person, as someone who really has this investment in the future through our sons, that we both have the hope, but also the conviction that the future that we see of a true American revival is possible.
ABC NEWS LIVE: What is it that you were able to fall in love with Vivek that you think that the American people, if they also knew this about him, if they saw this side of him, then Americans would also fall in love with him?
RAMASWAMY: He is extremely genuine. There is no version of him that I see that he does not put out in his speeches or in his interviews. He is someone who loves people.
He loves America, he loves life. He’s…extremely optimistic. There is no version of the world in which we are, as a country, do not succeed. There is no world in which we do not experience that American revival that he talks about. And I think the people are starting to see it, and it’s honestly infectious.
ABC NEWS LIVE: His greatest strength?
RAMASWAMY: His joy and optimism.
ABC NEWS LIVE: Biggest weakness?
RAMASWAMY: His biggest weakness, is the fact that he, in some ways it’s also one of his strengths, is that he speaks freely and especially with social media and everything being what it is, sometimes things can be memed and taken out of context.
ABC NEWS LIVE: He has said recently “Juneteenth is a useless holiday.” “Affirmative action is a cancer on our national soul.” He’s called the protesters “peaceful” on January 6. Do you guys agree with all of his passionate thoughts?
RAMASWAMY: Those are three very different statements, and I think they can be taken differently based on whether you say them the way they were or whether you take them in context. He also celebrated Juneteenth, a few months ago, and he believes very strongly that celebrating the end of slavery is an important thing. But as holidays go or any holiday for that matter, the fact that we have not taken a day off to allow people to vote, to actually engage in the democratic process, that would be the highest utility for any holiday.
So it being the most recent national holiday that was instated, that is really where it comes from. Utility for us as a country that says we believe in democracy. For us to still expect people to find time to vote, you know, in the interstices of their lives is really absurd.
ABC NEWS LIVE: But do you have differences of opinions or are you kind of lockstep with many of his main big political thrusts?
RAMASWAMY: He and I might disagree on how he says things, but when I get to talk to him, I have the pleasure of getting to talk to him more than anyone in the world, and I know [what’s] in his heart; I agree with everything he believes.
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