First two Muslim women elected to US Congress

08 November, 2018, 10:05 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar

She ran unopposed in Michigan's 13th Congressional District, easily surviving a write-in campaign from primary opponent Brenda Jones.

"I stand here before you tonight as your Congresswoman-elect with many firsts behind my name", Omar said in her victory speech, to loud cheers and applause.

The seat Omar won, Minnesota's 5th district, was formerly held by Rep. Keith Ellison, who was the first Muslim to take a seat in Congress. Ellison did not run for re-election as he sought the state attorney generalship.

Omar made history in 2016 when she was elected the first Somali-American legislator in the US, for which she was featured in Firsts, TIME's multimedia project on trailblazing women have broken glass ceilings in their respective fields.

At a subcommittee hearing a year ago, she lamented the policy positions that two veteran State Department diplomats had been required to present as representatives of the Trump administration.

Cody Fenwick is a reporter and editor.

This is the first time that Muslim women have been elected to the House.

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Statistically at least, the suggested silver lining of a European disappointment is less likely to come to fruition. I'm sure with every game and every training session we'll be better and better.

"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.

Omar (D), 36, fled war-torn Somalia in the '90s and lived in a refugee camp before moving to the US.

MA and CT will also send black women to Congress as firsts for their states, while Arizona and Tennessee are getting their first female senators. She spent four years in Dadaab until her family was cleared to emigrate to the US.

Tlaib is also considered a Democratic Socialist.

Tlaib is the daughter of Palestinian immigrants and became the first Muslim female member of Michigan's state legislature a decade ago.

According to the former refugee, President Trump's politics of fear motivated her to get in the race, Aljazeera reported on Wednesday, November 7.

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