First ever Muslim women elected to US House of Representatives

Nov 08, 2018, 00:40
First ever Muslim women elected to US House of Representatives

Tlaib will fill the seat formerly occupied by Michigan Democratic Rep. John Conyers, who left office previous year amid accusations of sexual misconduct.

Rashida Tlaib will be the nation's first Muslim woman elected to the U.S. House of Representatives.

Rashida, who is associated with a socialist group within the Democratic Party, is also very popular in this constituency.

They will join a record number of women in Congress.

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Her parents were Palestinian immigrants from the West Bank and Jerusalem.

"I'm Muslim and black", the hijab-wearing Omar said in a recent magazine interview.

Bassam Tlaib, the candidate's uncle, said she had "stood against Trump" at a time when "even our Arab leaders are unwilling to face (him)".

Omar, who arrived in the USA at the age of 14 after fleeing civil war in Somalia and lived in Kenya's Dadaab camp, campaigned on a platform which called for universal healthcare and tuition-free colleges. She eventually settled in Minneapolis.

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"Trump was a bit of a Bat-Signal for women in general of being engaged", she says, talking while out on the campaign trail in Detroit. She supports free college education, housing for all, and criminal justice reform.

Omar, a Somalia-born community activist who served a single term in the Minnesota Legislature, easily won Tuesday's election for the Minneapolis-area congressional district being vacated by Rep. Keith Ellison. She has captured national attention because of her life story as a refugee who made her way into elected office.

Since then, she has not stopped campaigning: she worked full-time as a volunteer for Barack Obama, and on dozens of local and state campaigns.

If Jones wins the special election, which she is expected to because there are no Republicans running against her, she will only serve about 7 weeks in Congress. She came to the United States more than two decades ago as a refugee.

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No Republicans were on the ballot in the heavily Democratic district, which represents parts of Detroit and some suburbs.

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