Mundelein candidate who slighted different races' intelligence resumes his campaign

A Mundelein village board candidate who dropped out of the race after being criticized for comments he made about people of different cultural backgrounds has decided to re-enter the contest.

"After careful consideration, (I) decided to resume my campaign effective today," Ramesh Sharma wrote Monday in an email to the Daily Herald. "The people of Mundelein will decide the outcome."

Three incumbents - Eric Schwenk, Kara Lambert and Kerston Russell - and former Trustee Robin Meier also are running for three seats on the board.

Although Sharma announced in late February he was dropping out of the race, he never filed the required paperwork with the village. His name was to remain on the April 4 ballot in any case, because the legal deadline for withdrawing a candidacy passed in January, a Lake County election official said.

During a joint candidate interview with the Daily Herald earlier in February, Sharma, who is of Indian descent, said Asian people are smarter than others.

After complaining about the lack of Asian Americans on the village board, Sharma claimed few are on the village payroll.

"Do you know the Asian people are the brain? They are the brain," Sharma said. "Are you people afraid of those people? Why?"

Schwenk asked Sharma to confirm he had just said Asian people are smarter than others.

"Of course they are," Sharma responded.

When asked to elaborate, Sharma said Asian people are more educated than those who are Latino, white or Black.

All the other candidates objected to Sharma's remarks. So did many social media users from Mundelein.

Sharma said his name's remaining on the ballot was a factor in resuming his campaign. In a telephone interview Monday, Sharma said people supporting his candidacy told him to "go to the finish line."

He acknowledged the chances of a victory "are very slim."

Sharma also noted he "bought all the stuff" to run and has renewed putting up campaign signs in town.

Mundelein board candidates survive petition challenges, will stay on ballot

Mundelein candidate says Asians are smarter; opponents call remark racist

Mundelein candidate who argued Asian people are smarter than others drops out of race

Mundelein village board: Lambert, Russell, Schwenk

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