USA midterms: first Muslim women elected to congress

She has stated that President Donald Trump's "politics of fear" motivated her to run for the seat.

The legislature consists of two chambers: the House of Representatives (which Omar has been elected to) and the Senate. The 36-year-old moved to America at the age of 12 as a refugee from Somalia.

Keith Ellison was the first Muslim to win a seat in Congress.

State Rep. Ilhan Omar, a Democrat, defeated Republican Jennifer Zielinski in the race to represent the state's Fifth District, which spans Minneapolis, Edina, Richfield, Golden Valley and other Minneapolis suburbs.

"It just shows how incredibly wonderful our country can be", she said.


Haaland, a member of the Pueblo of Laguna tribe, is a well-known community activist in her solidly Democratic district, working tirelessly to encourage Native Americans - who make up two percent of the United States population - to vote. Ilhan Omar, a Somali-American Democrat running for the House in Minnesota, could join Tlaib in Congress.

Tlaib's relatives in the West Bank village of Beit Ur Al-Fauqa greeted the news of her election with a mixture of pride and hope that she would be able to take on a U.S. administration widely seen as hostile to Muslims and the Palestinian cause.

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

She was born on July 24, 1976, to working-class Palestinian immigrants in Detroit and is the eldest of 14 children.

She also recognized Michigan's Rashida Tlaib who is also Muslim for winning. Her election comes during a presidential administration seen as fanning anger against Muslims and enacting anti-Muslim policies. She ran for lieutenant governor and served one term as the state party chair. She spent four years in Dadaab until her family was cleared to emigrate to the US.

  • Tracy Klein