Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib has lent her support to the 26 Muslim candidates emerged victorious in Tuesday’s off-year US elections, tweeting news of their successes. 
The election wins brings the total number of Muslims elected to office in the States this year to 34. Fifteen of the candidates were newly elected. Muslim advocacy groups have described the results as a blow against Islamophobia and a triumph for community organization.
Tlaib is one of four Democrat congresswomen who have shot to prominence thanks to their demagogic support for minority rights. Describing herself as a Palestinian American, she regularly uses Twitter to attack Israel. Retweeting a video by minorities-supporting campaign group “She The People” on election day, Tlaib commented: “Get out of the way. We are here and more are coming.”
Among the winners was 23-year-old Safiya Khalid, who took her seat on Lewiston City Council with nearly 70 percent of the vote.
Khalid, who arrived in America as a Somalian refugee aged seven and was dogged by online abuse throughout her campaign, told supporters that the win proved “community organizers beat internet trolls.”
Nadia Mohamed, 23, was another former Somalian refugee to win a city council position, in St Louis Park, Minnesota. She replaced the outgoing Democrat with 63 percent of the first-choice votes.
“When I close my eyes and think of an elected official, I get a different image that’s been in the history books,” she said.
@CAIR, @Jetpac_Inc, @MPower_Change: 26 American Muslim Candidates Win in Nov. 5 Elections for Total of 34 #Muslims Elected in 2019 – #ElectionDay2019#ElectionResults2019#Election2019@lsarsourhttps://t.co/KEuHO3AuUApic.twitter.com/VZHKJ5OZY5
— CAIR National (@CAIRNational) November 6, 2019
In Virginia, four Muslim women won their races. Democrat Ghazala Hashmi unseated incumbent Republican Glen Sturtevant in a surprise victory to take a State Senate seat. Also celebrating in Virginia were Lisa Zargarpur, elected to the Prince William County School Board, Buta Biberaj, who became Loudoun County’s new commonwealth’s attorney in a tight race against the incumbent Republican candidate, and 24 year-old Abrar Omeish, who took a place on the Fairfax County School Board making her both the youngest person to hold elected office in the state.
“What do Muslim Americans do during a time of heightened Islamophobia under a xenophobic administration? We run for office and win,” said Linda Sarsour, executive director of Muslim-American advocacy group MPower Change.
Mohammed Missouri, Director of JetPac, an organization that trains American Muslims to run for office, concurred, saying: “the surge in Muslim candidates running for office in recent years is, in part, a direct response to open expressions of Islamophobia in the U.S., including White House policies that critics see as anti-Muslim.”
Richard Meagher, a political science professor at Randolph-Macon College in Virginia said the results should make pundits question their assumptions. “We always hear about electability concerns, but women of color are not just electable, they’re the next generation of leaders for the Democratic Party of Virginia,” he said.
Credited Hashmi’s success in part to a district that was undergoing change, he added: “Chesterfield is the leading edge of the urbanization of the suburbs. We’re used to suburbs voting with rural districts, but they’re becoming more like the cities.”
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