Friday, October 23, 2020
Home Lead Story U.S. Midterm Election See Muslim American Women Making History

U.S. Midterm Election See Muslim American Women Making History

A style that will be put to the test come January, when Tlaib and Omar enter Congress as freshman lawmakers in a chamber their party will control.

Through the wind and rain, and longer than usual lines, casting a vote this election for former state lawmaker and Congressional candidate Rashida Tlaib wasn’t about making history for Detroit voter David White… it was about making a difference.

“Rashida represents everything that undermines those stereotypes,” he told VOA outside the Detroit fire station that doubles as a polling site on election days. “She doesn’t just appeal to a Muslim community. She appeals to a wide swath of individuals, and it just happens to be that she is Muslim, so I think it is important for the Muslim community, but important for other communities.. any community really… to see Rashida and her effectiveness and advocacy as an outstanding public servant as an example that your race doesn’t define you.”

It also didn’t define Somali refugee and Minnesota Congressional candidate Democrat Ilhan Omar to a diverse coalition of voters in the election race that helped her secure a victory over the Republican challenger in her Minneapolis district.

“I stand here before you tonight as your congresswoman-elect, with many firsts behind my name,” she told a crowd of supporters at her mid term election victory party. “The first woman of color to represent our state in Congress. The first woman to wear a hijab to represent our state in Congress. The first refugee ever elected to Congress. And one of the first Muslim women elected to Congress.”

 

Riding solid gains for Democratic candidates in the U.S midterm elections, Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar are now set to make history when they become the first Muslim American congresswomen when the next U.S. legislative body convenes in January. Expectations are high for both women as they seek to influence U.S. policy on issues ranging from immigration reform to foreign policy at a time when their faith is under increasing hostility.

democrats, USA, election
Democratic congressional candidate Ilhan Omar reacts after appearing at her midterm election night party in Minneapolis, Minnesota. VOA

While both were elected in districts that could be considered liberal and progressive – heavily favoring their political party – voters like Allyson Brooks, who cast her ballot in the same Detroit polling location as Tlaib, says this historic moment was a long time coming. “It’s crazy that it’s 2018 and this could possibly be the first time that this is happening. We need more Muslims in the Congress, in the Senate and in the House.”

“Being Arab and being Muslim is always going to be a part of who I am,” Tlaib told VOA in between last-minute campaign activities on election day. “But just like prophet Muhammed, peace be upon him, he was all about justice, so, so much of my thinking is embedded in justice.”

Tlaib, who also becomes the first Palestinian American in Congress, promises her reputation as an outspoken critic of President Donald Trump and his administration’s policies isn’t going to change as she makes the transition from candidate to Congresswoman.

“It’s never going to happen. It’s just not in me. I think people say to me all the time, we wanted different and that’s why we voted for you. We need someone who’s going to go in and fight.

 

democrats, USA, election
Democratic U.S. congressional candidate Rashida Tlaib celebrates with her mother at her midterm election night party in Detroit, Michigan. VOA

 

A fight voter David White is confident she is prepared for, even if he isn’t.

“My personal style is not Rashida’s style… standing up in the middle of a speech and shouting him down,” he explained, referencing Tlaib’s August 2016 encounter at then-candidate Donald Trump’s appearance before the Detroit Economic Club. During Trump’s speech, Tlaib spoke out from the crowd and was forcibly removed from the event by security. “We need some of that,” White insisted, “We need some of that strong resistance even though I don’t necessarily identify with that style.”

 

A style that will be put to the test come January, when Tlaib and Omar enter Congress as freshman lawmakers in a chamber their party will control. (VOA)

STAY CONNECTED

19,120FansLike
362FollowersFollow
1,778FollowersFollow

Most Popular

Sushmita Sen: Time Off Gave The Breathing Space To Introspect

Sushmita Sen is back in the spotlight and on the screen, but there was a time when she distanced herself from it all. The...

Swiggy Onboards Over 7000 New Restaurants In A Month

Online food delivery platform Swiggy on Thursday revealed it has onboarded more than 7,000 new restaurants a month on Swiggy which is 3,000 more...

OTT Platforms Ready For Explosive Growth Led By Jio 5G Network

In a socially distanced world, over-the-top (OTT) video and data consumption are witnessing a steep surge in India and led by Jio Platforms that...

Facebook Starts Charging Companies For Using WhatsApp For Business

Facebook on Thursday said it will finally start charging companies using WhatsApp for Business, as it expanded ways for its users to check out...

Uttar Pradesh Helpline Number To Answer In Regional Language

The emergency helpline number 112 in Uttar Pradesh will now respond to callers in Bhojpuri, Braj, Awadhi, and Bundeli dialects. This has been done on...

Down Syndrome May Increase COVID Death Risk

Researchers have found that down syndrome is associated with a 10-fold increased risk for COVID-19-related death. Down syndrome (sometimes called Down's syndrome) is a condition...

Miss India 2020 Pageant Held Virtually Due to Pandemic

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Miss India 2020 pageant will be held virtually the Miss India Organisation has announced. A nationwide audition to...

6 Designers Came Together to Help Craft Clusters Impacted by Pandemic

Six fashion designers came together to support marginalized craft clusters and those heavily impacted by the pandemic by generating livelihood opportunities for the artisans....

Recent Comments