FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 15, 2018
Emgage PAC: A Historic Night in Minnesota for Muslim Americans
Washington, D.C. – Muslim Americans have gone through trying times over the past couple of years, facing a spike in hate crimes amid President Donald Trump’s election, a Muslim ban upheld by the Supreme Court, as well as Islamophobic rhetoric and policies from the White House.
Today, however, we celebrate the Muslim Americans who chose to stand up against these trying times. Minnesota state Rep. Ilhan Omar, who was born in Somalia and spent four years in a refugee camp in Kenya before coming to the U.S. at age 12, won the Democratic primary on Tuesday for the state’s 5th Congressional District to fill the seat that opened up when Rep. Keith Ellison announced his bid for Minnesota Attorney General, who also won his primary race in a landslide victory.
If Omar wins the seat, she will likely join Emgage PAC endorsee Rashida Tlaib, a Palestinian American who won her primary for Michigan’s 13th Congressional District last week, in becoming the nation’s first Muslim women in Congress. Along with Omar and Ellison, were two more Muslim candidates that also won their primaries. Mohamud Noor, will become the first Somali-American man to be elected to a state house, won his primary race for Omar’s seat for Minneapolis House District 60B. As well as, Hodan Hassan, becoming the second Somali-American female, after Ilhan Omar, to be elected to a state legislature, won her primary race for Minneapolis House District 62A.
Over the last months, Emgage PAC engaged in a robust effort to organize and mobilize American Muslims. Emgage Action CEO Wael Alzayat said, “This year, the American Muslim community showed that they are not intimidated by bigotry and Islamophobia by making their voices heard at the polls.” Emgage PAC’s efforts organized dozens of volunteers who registered voters, knocked on doors, distributed voter and endorsement guides and made calls from across the country to encourage Muslim American voters to go to the polls.
Emgage Action is the leading American Muslim civic and political engagement organization. Emgage PAC is a bipartisan, nationally based political action committee that supports state and federal candidates, primarily in battleground states, based on their support for civil rights, minority rights and a diverse America where underrepresented communities are seen as a part of the social fabric of our nation. For more information visit www.emgagepac.org.