Early Life & Career
The eldest of 14 children, Rashida Tlaib was raised in Southwest Detroit by her immigrant parents. Her mother was born in Beit Ur El Foka, near the West Bank city of Ramallah. Her father was born in Beit Hanina, a suburb of Jerusalem. He moved first to Nicaragua, then to Detroit, where he worked on an assembly line in a Ford Motor Company plant. In 1998, Tlaib received her B.A. in Political Science from Wayne State University. While working full-time, she attended weekend classes at Thomas Cooley Law School, where she earned her law degree in January of 2004.
Prior to entering her political career, Tlaib worked for Latin Americans for Social and Economic Development (LASED), the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS), the Office of State Representative Steve Tobocman, the International Institute of Metro Detroit, and the Neighborhood Tax Center.
Tlaib began her political career in 2004, when she started an internship to the State Representative Steve Tobocman. Both Tobocman and Tlaib were born to immigrant families. When Tobocman became Majority Floor Leader in 2007, he recruited Tlaib to be on his staff. In 2008, Tobocman convinced Tlaib to run for his seat, which he would be vacating due to term limits. Tlaib was elected to Michigan House of Representatives in 2008, representing the 12th District (Southwest Detroit).
Tobocman said he first met Tlaib about 2003 when she was working for the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services, where she did advocacy work for immigrants.
"I was just really, really impressed," he said. When he later became majority floor leader and got another staff slot, he recruited Tlaib for the job and found her a quick study.
Tlaib brought both a passion for social justice and the ability to work with people across the political aisle with very different outlooks.
"She's someone who just intuitively understood the process right off the bat," Tobocman said.
Tobocman, the grandson of Jewish immigrants from Poland, couldn't run for re-election because of term limits. He asked Tlaib to run; she resisted but "he kept coming back," she recalled.
Humanitarian Needs in Cuba letter
December 16 2021 , House Rules Committee Chair James McGovern (D-MA), House Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Gregory Meeks (D-NY), House Appropriations subcommittee on State and Foreign Operations Chair Barbara Lee (D-CA), and House Energy and Commerce subcommittee on Energy Chair Bobby Rush (D-IL) led 114 Members of Congress in a letter to President Biden asking him to prioritize the well-being of the Cuban people as they experience the worst economic and humanitarian crisis in recent history...
In the wake of this year’s protests, the members urged the administration to support the Cuban people by suspending U.S. regulations that prevent food, medicine, remittances, and other humanitarian assistance from reaching the Cuban people...
Signatories included Rashida Tlaib.
Netroots Nation 2021
NETROOTS NATION 2021 OPENING KEYNOTE Plenary; Thu, 10/07/2021 - 05:00pm (Eastern)
Pundits talk about COVID and getting “back to normal,” but we progressives have a message: Normal isn’t good enough. We want bold, progressive solutions on issues like economic policy, climate change, immigration and more. Hear progressive leaders discuss their vision for progressive change on key issues and discuss how we can build momentum for 2022 and beyond.
You’ll hear from DNC Chairman Jaime Harrison; Rep. Joe Neguse with immigration activists Tania Chairez and Marissa Molina; Aspiration co-founder Joe Sanberg, Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes and Rep. Rashida Tlaib. We’ll end the session with a special conversation with Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm, White House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy, and Mustafa Santiago Ali.
Led by: Cheryl Contee
Panelists: Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, Tania Chairez, Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm, Jaime Harrison, White House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy, Marissa Molina, Rep. Joe Neguse, Joe Sanberg, Mustafa Santiago Ali, Rep. Rashida Tlaib
Congressional Freethought Caucus
In 2020 members of the Congressional Freethought Caucus included Rashida Tlaib .
Defense spending cuts letter
May 19, 2020.
Dear Chairman Smith and Ranking Member Thornberry:
We write to request a reduction in defense spending during the coronavirus pandemic. As you draft this year’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), we encourage you to authorize a level of spending below last year’s authorized level. Congress must remain focused on responding to the coronavirus pandemic and distributing needed aid domestically. In order to do so, appropriators must have access to increased levels of non-defense spending which could be constrained by any increase to defense spending.
Co-signatories included Rashida Tlaib .
Muslim Left connections
Defending the Human Rights of Palestinian Children Act
April 2021—U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN) introduced the Defending the Human Rights of Palestinian Children and Families Living Under Israeli Military Occupation Act, or H.R. 2590, provides that no U.S. funds to the Israeli government may be used to support the military detention or ill-treatment of Palestinian children; the seizure, appropriation, or destruction of Palestinian property and forcible transfer of civilians in the occupied West Bank; or to facilitate further unilateral annexation of Palestinian land by the Israeli government in violation of international humanitarian law.
The bill establishes annual certification and reporting obligations on the Secretary of State to show that no U.S. funds have been used by the Israeli government to support the prohibited activities included in the legislation. The McCollum bill also requires oversight reporting detailing the Israeli government’s human rights violations against Palestinians.
Initial co-sponsors were Reps Bobby Rush, Danny Davis, Andre Carson, Marie Newman, Ilhan Omar, Mark Pocan, Raul Grijalva, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley, Cori Bush, Jamaal Bowman, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Jesus Garcia .
Sponsoring organizations included Adalah Justice Project, Al-Haq, Americans for Peace Now (APN), American Friends Service Committee, American Muslims for Palestine, Arab Resource & Organizing Center (AROC), Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, Center for Constitutional Rights, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Christian Jewish Allies for a Just Peace in Israel/Palestine, Churches for Middle East Peace, Church of the Brethren – Office of Peacebuilding and Policy, CODEPINK, Defense for Children International – Palestine, Democracy for the Arab World Now (DAWN), Democratic Socialists of America BDS and Palestine Solidarity Working Group, The Episcopal Church, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Eyewitness Palestine, Freedom Forward, Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL), Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA), Grassroots Global Justice Alliance, IfNotNow, Institute for Policy Studies – New Internationalism Project, J Street, Jewish Voice for Peace Action, Jews for Racial & Economic Justice, Justice Democrats, MADRE, Massachusetts Peace Action, Middle East Children’s Alliance, MPower Action Fund, National Council of Churches USA, New Generation for Palestine, NGP Action, Norwegian Refugee Council, Palestine Legal, Peace Action, Presbyterian Church (USA), Progressive Democrats of America, Reformed Church in America, Sacramento Democrats for Justice in Palestine, Tree of Life Educational Fund, U.S. Palestinian Community Network (USPCN), Unitarian Universalists for Justice in the Middle East, United Church of Christ, United Church of Christ Palestine Israel Network, United We Dream Network, US Campaign for Palestinian Rights (USCPR), US Palestinian Council, Veterans for Peace, Win Without War, Working Families Party.
Tlaib/Omar Palestine press conference
On August 19, Representative Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota) and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Michigan) held a press conference in the State Capitol in Saint Paul to a packed room, with an overflow of 100 people, on the human cost of the Israeli occupation of Palestine and travel restrictions.
On August 16 2019, the Israeli government denied the representatives visas to visit Palestine. Their visas previously had been approved, but after a tweet by Donald Trump denouncing Omar and Tlaib’s visit, the approval was revoked. Congresswoman Stacey Plaskett, delegate to House for the Virgin Islands, was to join them on their trip to Palestine. At the press conference, the representatives were joined by four women who have experience with the occupation and the area’s travel restrictions.
As a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee, Representative Omar has a direct say in the over $3 billion worth of aid given to Israel every year. Omar asked if this aid should continue. “This is predicated on them being an ally and important democracy in the Middle East. Denying visits to duly elected officials and denying freedom of movement, expression or self-determination to millions is not consistent with being a good ally of democracy. We must ask Israel to stop building settlements on the West Bank and ensure the rights of Palestinians if we are going to give them aid.”
Omar added, “This is nothing less than an attempt by an ally of the United States to suppress our ability to do our jobs as elected officials,” and, “This decision to deny us entry might be unprecedented when it comes to members of Congress, but this is the Israeli government’s policy when it comes to anyone who holds views that threaten the occupation. The only way to preserve unjust policy is to suppress people’s expression, people’s freedom of association, and freedom of movement. The cruel occupation is real. Barring people from seeing it does not make it go away.”
Representative Tlaib gave a graphic and emotional account of her trip to Palestine as a young girl. The treatment of her mother at checkpoints horrified her, and she was terrified her grandmother would not receive adequate medical care after a car accident. She was very frightened when Israeli soldiers with guns and tanks suddenly appeared in the middle of the night in the village where she was staying. She added, “the outpouring of support from their districts as well as around the country shows how important it is to keep fighting for justice.”
Lana Barkawi, a Palestinian-American and Minneapolis native, has been unable to visit Palestine. She said that the human cost of occupation and travel restrictions for those involved in the BDS - Boycott, Divestment, Sanction - movement is unacceptable.
Amber Harris, a Jewish American woman who is married to a Palestinian, spoke of the harassment she has experienced when trying to go to Palestine. She was almost banned for ten years, for unknown reasons. She believes she was banned because she was involved in the uprising in Ferguson, at the time of murder of Michael Brown by the police. When she was finally let into Palestine, the Israeli government threatened her with surveillance. Harris denounces the Israeli’s government continued denial of entry into Palestine on the basis of religion, race, ethnicity and activism.
Carin Mrotz, of Jewish Community Action, spoke of the divide-and-conquer tactics employed to pit the Jewish community against the Muslim community on the false premise of security. “We must stand together for our own together and for justice everywhere.”
Rosa Drucker, from IfNotNow, a Jewish organization which opposes the Israeli occupation of Palestine, said, “The situation is complex, but not complicated. It is a daily nightmare for those who live it, and a moral disaster for those who support it. We stand with the congresswomen."
Darryl E. Jordan connection
Piper Martine Carter June 14 2019·
Our Youth Green Squad with our Director of East Michigan Environmental Action Council with our Congresswoman @rashidatlaib at the Breathe Free Detroit event celebrating the shut down of the incinerator at the #CassCorridorCommons #ClimateJustice #EnvironmentalJustice — with Darryl E. Jordan.
Anthony Rogers-Wright July 30 2019·
Supported Progressive Health Care Reform
In late 2009, Rashida Tlaib was one of more than 1,000 state legislators to sign a letter entitled "State Legislators for Progressive Health Care Reform". The letter was a project of the Progressive States Network and was developed in consultation with national health care reform advocates, including the AFL-CIO, AFSCME, Community Catalyst, Families USA, Herndon Alliance, National Women's Law Center, Northeast Action, SEIU, and Universal Health Care Action Network. The letter reads in part,
- "Failure to pass national comprehensive health reform now will further jeopardize state and local budgets, undermining public services like education, public safety, and transportation infrastructure... We, the undersigned, call on President Obama and the Congress to enact bold and comprehensive health care reform this year – based on these principles and a strong federal-state collaboration – and pledge our support as state legislators and allies in pursuit of guaranteed, high quality, affordable health care for all."
Sharing a stage with Van Jones
"Green jobs pioneer" and "former" communist Van Jones was the keynote speaker for the 4th annual Michigan Summit on June 12, 2010 headlining a day-long event focusing on key issues and policy reforms for Michigan. Jones was a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress, a leading Washington, DC-based think tank. other speakers included Flint Mayor Dayne Walling; Dan Kildee, President of Community Progress; Representative Rashida Tlaib; Representative Sarah Roberts; Representative Ellen Cogen Lipton; Representative Woodrow Stanley; Representative Kate Segal.
People for the American Way support
Muslim left connections
AMP Virtual Palestine Advocacy
American Muslims for Palestine - NJ Chapter plans to go live.
Circa September 10 2020
🗓️ SAVE THE DATE: Tuesday, September 15, at 1:30 pm EST. As part of our first-ever Virtual Palestine Advocacy Days, we're bringing you the most exciting AMP Congressional Plenary to date - LIVE here on Facebook!
🗣️ Six members of congress will be speaking: Reps. Betty McCollum, Rashida Tlaib, Donald Payne, Jr., Debbie Dingell, Judy Chu, and Andre Carson; along with an amazing lineup of speakers, including Dr. Hanan Ashrawi, Diana Buttu, Ahmed Shihab-Eldin, Rasha Mubarak, Salih Booker, and our very own Dr. Osama Abuirshaid and Dr. Hatem Bazian.
Arab American Political Action Committee
- "Congratulations! Rashida Tlaib won the Democratic nomination for the House in Michigan's 13th District, putting her on track to become the first Muslim and Palestinian-American congresswoman in US history. She will run unopposed in November's special elections as the Republican Party has not put forward any candidate to contest the seat. The daughter of Palestine did it! Mabrook! — with Abbas Hamideh and Rashida Tlaib."
Swearing In with Rep. Rashida Tlaib
From the River to the Sea
- "Abbas Hamideh wore the Palestinian war scarf keffiyeh, the New Swastika while chanting...
- ""From the River, to the Sea"...the call for the genocide of the Jewish people!"
Supporting "terror support" suspects
In October 2010, just one day before "community activists" were expected to present subpoenaed documents to a Grand Jury in Chicago, 68 organizations and dozens of public figures demanded an end to FBI investigations and Grand Jury subpoenas on Chicago and Minneapolis activists (mainly connected to the Freedom Road Socialist Organization/FightBack!) accused of supporting terrorist groups in the Middle East and Latin America via a jointly signed letter. Signatories include the American Friends Service Committee (Western Region), National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, and American-Arab anti-Discrimination Committee, as well as four San Francisco Supervisors, and Rashida Tlaib of the Michigan House of Representatives.
The jointly signed letter will be presented today at 2pm EST, and comes in response to the September 24, 2010 FBI Raids on the Illinois and Minnesota homes and offices of at least 14 activists targeted for alleged “Material Support for Terrorism.”
Michigan Pakistan American Caucus
Over 3600 people attended the Michigan Democratic Party's convention at the Cobo Center in Detroit on Saturday February 23rd, 2017.
As in the past, the Pakistan American Caucus, Michigan Democratic Party participated at the event. Many community members were in attendance.
The Pakistani Caucus welcomed many elected officials and some candidates for various positions during the event. Some of the many prominent guests who addressed the caucus included US Congressman Gary Peters, State Rep. Rashida Tlaib, State Rep. Sam Singh, Mrs. Juliana Smoot, and many more.
NIAC 2020 endorsement
First Wave of 2020 Endorsements.
The 2020 Election may be the most critical vote in our lifetime. It is more important than ever that Iranian Americans and our allies have a powerful voice at the ballot box.
That’s why we are excited to announce NIAC Action’s first 2020 endorsements – our largest ever single wave of endorsements!
We have an opportunity to elect more Iranian Americans into office than ever before.
And we have our best chance ever to send the first Iranian American to the U.S. Congress!
We have identified twelve champions of our community – incumbent members of Congress who have worked to prevent war and end Trump’s ban on our families, and Iranian Americans who are ready to make an impact in all levels of government. With your help, we can elect them to office and bring real change in 2020.
By making a donation to NIAC Action PAC, you can help elect these champions of our community and send a powerful, united message that Iranian Americans will not be ignored on the political stage.
Rashida Tlaib – Incumbent, U.S. Congress (D, MI-13).
Congresswoman Tlaib is a leading advocate of efforts to end the Muslim Ban and has committed to blocking Trump from going to war with Iran. She has used her national platform to promote issues and values in line with NIAC Action’s mission..
Arab American Institute
As of January 2018 Rashida Tlaib served on the Board of the Arab American Institute.
Rashida Tlaib For Congress March 31.
TODAY is the first and most important fundraising deadline of my campaign! Spending the morning with my friend Rep. Keith Ellison talking about how to make sure Democrats aren't just a Blue Wave in 2018, because waves come and go - we need to own the whole ocean!
Muslims running for office
Universal Muslim Association of America (UMAA), July 18, 2018.
Muslim Americans are running for office in unprecedented levels. Come hear from these individuals speak about the unique experiences, challenges and perspectives they have as they seek to have a voice in developing policy. — with Billy Amen, Abdullah Hammoud, Sam Baydoun For Wayne County Commissioner, Fayrouz Saad and Rashida Tlaib For Congress.
2016 Annual Islamic Scholarship Fund Bay Area Banquet
Linda Sarsour spoke at 2016 annual ISF Annual Bay Area Banquet sponsored by the Islamic Scholarship Fund. Political Science Assistant Professor Dr. Dalia Fahmy and politician Rashida Tlaib also spoke at the event.
Rashida Tlaib For Congress November 14, 2013.
Thank you Maya Berry!
- Dear Friends, I know that many demands are placed on your time and money—and sometimes from me. While this is yet another request, this one is different. For those of you who know Rashida, you know why. For those of you who have not yet met her, trust me, you will understand after meeting her on Monday.
- Rashida Tlaib is an extraordinary person. A community organizer whose public service led her to the Michigan House of Representatives, she is now running for the state senate. Talk of a congressional seat has already started. Next Monday, November 18, from 6:30 to 8:00 PM, Secretary Ray LaHood and Congressman Keith Ellison will join us to support Rashida at a fundraiser for her state senate campaign. Please write a check and give us one evening to support someone who is already a star on the Arab American “Farm Team” of officeholders. And if you are not in DC, here is the link to make an online contribution (www.rashida4senate.com).
She has inspired so many of us with her unsurpassed energy, her commitment and her extraordinary courage. Please support her.
All the best,
Emgage Action rally
Politicians and activists rallied Muslim Americans in Dearborn on July 29 2018 to encourage voter participation in the upcoming Aug. 7 primary election and to register new voters for the November ballot.
Held outside the Ford Community and Performing Arts Center, there was a festive atmosphere, with bouncy houses for children, and food vendors to tempt tastes, but there was a serious message to impart: In an election pivotal to Muslim Americans candidates and voters, every vote will count, in the primary and general election, and eligible citizens should register and learn about the process and ballot.
The event was organized and sponsored by Emgage Action, an American Muslim community advocacy organization; Mpower Change, a grassroots movement working to build social, spiritual, racial and economic justice for all people; the Michigan Muslim Community Council, which works to unify communities and promote social justice; and the National Network for Arab American Communities, an Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services Institution.
“What we’re trying to do is energize our community, get them out to the polls, because we have a lot of great candidates right now,” Al-Hanooti said. “Not only because they are Muslim, but because they are extremely qualified and viable candidates. So this is our time, and we are taking full advantage and mobilizing.”
Gubernatorial candidate Abdul El-Sayed and political activist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who spoke at the rally, were the reason many attended, but for Majeda Tafish, 40, of Dearborn, who became a naturalized citizen 10 years ago, it was a chance to take the first step to register to vote.
In the past, Tafish said, the lists of candidates and the issues seemed daunting to her.
“I want to vote, to have a voice,” she said. “Wherever I go, they keep saying, ‘Vote, vote,’ but I see a big list and I don’t know any of them. They give me a brochure that says nice things about them, but I don’t know who to believe.”
Among the politicians on hand for the event were Sam Beydoun, candidate for Wayne County Commissioner; Donald Stuckey II, candidate for Michigan’s 9th state House district; state Rep. Sylvia Santana, current House Representative for the 9th district, who is running for state Senator for District 3; Gary Woronchak, Wayne County Commission chairman, who is running for state Senate in the 3rd district; Fatou-Seydi Sarr, candidate for state House in the 8th district; Abraham Aiyash, candidate for the state Senate 2nd district; U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D – 12th District),; Fayrouz Saad, candidate for U.S. House 11th district; Rashida Tlaib, candidate for the U.S. House 13th district; state Rep. Abdullah Hammoud, 15th district; Democratic primary gubernatorial candidate Abdul El-Sayed; and Michigan Supreme Court Candidates Samuel Bagenstos and Megan Cavanagh.
Sarr, Aiyash, Dingell, Saad, Tlaib, Hammoud, El-Sayed, Bagenstos and Cavanagh were among the politicians who spoke at the event. They were joined by speakers Dawud Walid, executive director of the Michigan Chapter of the Council of American-Islamic Relations; Ahmad Abuznaid, director of the National Network for Arab American Communities, an Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services institution; activist Khadega Mohammed; activist Linda Sarsour; and political activist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York City.
Abdul El-Sayed called for the Muslim voting community to raise its voices, vote and encourage others to vote in the primary and general election.
“When you look at who we are right now, we are so much better,” he said. “That is the opportunity in front of us on Aug. 7. Let’s not lose that opportunity because we, together, are doing the work of democracy. Now let’s go get it.”
Election night/Palestinian flag
Rashida Tlaib draped herself in the Palestinian flag, election night 2018.
Ahlam Jbara connection
Nayyirah Shariff connection
Nayyirah Shariff December 14, 2018 ·
Muslim Collective for Equitable Democracy Conference
In July 2019 Congressmembers Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, Judy Chu, Susan Wild and Betty McCollum addressed the inaugural Muslim Collective for Equitable Democracy Conference and Presidential Forum July 23-24 at the Washington DC National Housing Center.
Other speakers included Keith Ellison, Abdul El-Sayed, Khizr Khan, Basheer Jones, Omar Suleiman, Sam Rasoul, Zahra Billoo, Catherine Orsborn, Corey Saylor, Daniel L. Weiner Delia Mogahed, Prof. Asifa Quraishi-Landes, James Zogby, Farhana Kheera, Suhail Khan, Mike Ghouse, Zainab Cheema, Sister Simone Campbell, Scott Simpson, Shaun Kennedy, Ken Martin, Sadaf Jaffer, Dilara Saeed, Luqmaan Bokhary, Nabilah Islam, Movita Johnson-Harrell, Rummi Khan, Ghazala Hashmi, Shahed Amanullah,Sevim Kalyoncu, Ani Osman-Zonneveld, Yasmeen Awwad, Amira Daugherty, Sabina Taj, Asina Silva, Dr. Jay Jalisi.
Anniversary of Muslim Ban
06/29/2019 Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib called a press conference today to uplift the one year anniversary of the SCOTUS decision to uphold the hateful Muslim Ban and reflect on its impact in our communities. Rep. Tlaib was joined by Rep. Debbie Dingell, Rep. Brenda Lawrence, and Congressman Andy Levin. Organizations in attendance include National Network for Arab American Communities parent organization ACCESS, ABISA, ACLU of Michigan, Cair - Michigan, Detroit Hispanic Development Corporation, Emgage, and Michigan Roundtable for Diversity and Inclusion!
Since the ban was enacted, families have been torn apart by a reckless policy that fuels anti-Muslim attitudes and action. Our work will continue until all immigrants and refugees are welcomed into this country.
Maurice & Jane Sugar Law Center
Essential: Advocacy for Workplace Justice
In 2008, Rashida Tlaib was present at the Essential: Advocacy for Workplace Justice Reception & Silent Auction at Detroit Public Library’s Skillman branch. The reception, which was held on Nov. 14, 2008 is the annual fundraising event to benefit the far left National Lawyers Guild-affiliated Maurice & Jane Sugar Law Center for Economic & Social Justice. The guest of honor at the reception was Andy Levin, son of Congressman Sander Levin, and Deputy Director at the Michigan Department of Labor & Economic Growth.
Representatives from the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR - Michigan) July 2010 gave oral testimony at a special town hall meeting on racial profiling with government officials and civil rights attorneys at the Wayne State University Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights in Detroit.
The town hall meeting, which was organized by the Rights Working Group and co-sponsored by CAIR-MI, had panelists taking testimony on racial and religious profiling from civil rights activists and community organizers. Panelists hearing testimony included U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan Barbara McQuade, Michigan State Representative Rashida Tlaib, Michigan Civil Rights Commissioner Nabih Ayad, and Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) Executive Director Vincent Warren.
CAIR - Michigan Executive Director Dawud Walid and CAIR-MI Staff Attorney Lena Masri testified about growing constituent concerns regarding surveillance and misuse of confidential informants in mosques and religious profiling during re-entry into the United States. Walid elaborated on the chilling effect on Michigan Muslims to freely exercise their First Amendment rights to Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Assembly in light of last year's fatal shooting of Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah in Dearborn by FBI agents based on a raid provoked by the use of confidential informants.
CAIR - Cleveland Executive Director Julia Shearson was also in attendance and monitored testimony offered.
Other organizations who participated in the town hall included the American Civil Liberties Union - Michigan (ACLU-MI), Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS), Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality, and Mexican American Legal Defense Educational Fund (MALDEF). 
“Your fight for those who don’t have the resources to defend themselves is invaluable. The advocacy efforts of your organization are vital to all American Muslims, Americans, our community and our state.” - Michigan State Representative Rashida H. Tlaib (March 2010). 
CAIR LA banquet
Hussam Ayloush connection
Hussam Ayloush November 18 2018:
With Lena Masri
Rashida Tlaib April 22 2018;
Congratulations from Nihad Awad
- Congratulations @RashidaTlaib on a historic victory of becoming the first Muslim and Palestinian woman in the US Congress. Now Congress will hear from a Palestinian.
- This and @IlhanMN's victory to the MN state house 2 yrs ago is rebuke to Trump's anti-Muslim and racist policies.
Tlaib swearing in
Freedom Road connections
Post Primary Get Together
People's Charter endorser
Endorsers included Rashida Tlaib.
The People's Charter Launch
October 8 2020.
WFP PEOPLE’S CHARTER LIVE LAUNCH: We know that defeating Trump is a doorway, not a destination. Join us for the live launch of a #PeoplesCharter—a new, ambitious roadmap out of our current crisis, to an America that works for all of us. Featured speakers include Rep. Ayanna Pressley, Rep. Ro Khanna, Rep. Rashida Tlaib, Rep. Jesus Garcia, Jamaal Bowman and Cori Bush. (via act.tv)
Michigan Asian American Progressives endorsement
In 2020 Michigan Asian American Progressives endorsed Tania Ganguly, Ranjeev Puri, Sommer Foster, Rashida Tlaib, Mary McCormack, Mai Xiong, Linh Song, Lily Cheng-Schulting, Kelly Breen, Julia Pulver, Abraham Aiyash, Ernesto Querijero, Elizabeth Welch.
Black Women in Defense of Ilhan Omar
Dozens of women from the Movement for Black Lives, a coalition of African-American advocates, gathered April 30 2019 in support of Congresswoman Ilhan Omar who has been a target of hate-speech and trolling by right-wing politicians and their supporters.
The women gathered in front of Washington’s Capitol building chanting, “We love you” to Omar in the event named “Black Women in Defense of Ilhan Omar.”
"The thing that upsets the occupant of the White House, his goons in the Republican Party (and) many of our colleagues in the Democratic Party," Omar told the crowd, "is that they can't stand that a refugee, a black woman, an immigrant, a Muslim, shows up in Congress thinking she's equal to them."
Miski Noor told Middle East Eye that Omar is facing such criticisms because of her identity. She is a Muslim woman and was a Somalian refugee when she arrived in the U.S.
"There are people, because of their white supremacist and racist views of the world, (who) hate her because of her identities and based on fear," she said.
"At the same time, we know Ilhan is being attacked because of the content of what she's saying,"added Noor.
Ayanna Pressley, Omar’s fellow U.S. Congresswoman, shouted, "Hands off Ilhan,” while criticizing politicians from her own Democratic Party, for failing to stand with the legislator.
She added, "silencing of Black women" won’t be acceptable anymore.
"This is a reckoning. This is us assuming our rightful place, as the table-shakers, as the truth-tellers, as the justice-seekers, as the preservers of democracy," said Pressley.
"We are demanding that you trust black women, that you see black women, that you believe black women and honor us for the role that we have played as healers and preservers of this democracy and this nation," emphasized Pressley.
Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib also criticized the attempt of silencing Black women.
"They continue to police our words; they continue to police our positions," she said. "But I say 'hands off; hands off the women of color who serve in the United States Congress,” Tlaib said.
Omar in her speech said that Islamophobia and anti-Jewish hatred are "two sides of the same coin of bigotry.”
"The occupant of the White House and [his] allies are doing everything that they can to distance themselves … from the monster that they've created that is terrorizing the Jewish community and the Muslim community," the Congresswoman said.
"We collectively must make sure that we are dismantling all systems of oppression," added Omar.
Honoring James Boggs
Grace Lee Boggs June 29 2019·
REP. RASHIDA TLAIB HONORS JAMES BOGGS IN CONGRESS.
"James Boggs played a pivotal role in labor organizing in the Civil Rights Movement in the City of Detroit," said the Congresswoman from Michigan's 13th District," said Tlaib.
Please join us this Sunday for a lively conversation about James Boggs's life and life's work. Featured authors and activists include Danny Glover, Robin Kelley and Clementine Barfield, along with Carl Edwards and others.
The panel discussion will be held at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History this Sunday, June 30, from 2-6pm with a birthday celebration immediately following at the Cass Commons.
"We appreciate Congresswoman Tlaib's comments acknowledging the importance of Jimmy Boggs to human, civil and labor rights in the 20th Century," said Boggs Center Board Member Stephen Ward. "And we appreciate her commitment to justice in the 21st Century."
Quoting Grace Lee Boggs
Grace Lee Boggs said: A revolution that is based on the people exercising their creativity in the midst of devastation is one of the great historical contributions of humankind.
Thank you @RoKhanna for leading our fight today to demand support for the #GreenNewDeal.
Stephanie Chang connection
Grace Lee Boggs remains one of the most iconic figures in Detroit history. At once an author, activist, philosopher and feminist, she challenged individuals to think critically about their own activism, and empowered countless communities to create change on their own terms.
That sentiment is echoed in one of her most notable quotes: “We are the leaders we’ve been waiting for.” A message that also resonates in the work of Detroit Lover and Michigan State Representative, Stephanie Chang.
“Grace really cared about Detroit and inspired so many people to rethink the way we do things in our communities, whether in education, the economy or simply the value we give our neighborhoods. You could never really have a conversation with her without being given some type of assignment, like an article to read or some issue to think and write about. And she especially loved hearing what young people had to say about issues in their communities.”
Chang’s own passion for serving others was galvanized during her undergraduate studies at the University of Michigan.
“I majored in psychology and minored in Asian/Pacific Islander American (A/PIA) Studies, and was active as a student organizer on a lot of issues affecting students of color on campus. I actually wanted to be a civil rights lawyer, so my first few years of college I was planning to go to law school.”
Those plans began to change as she progressed through school though.
“I had two professors — Emily Lawsin & Scott Kurashige — who were very active in Detroit and got me involved with the Detroit Asian Youth Project. It was through that and our A/PIA Studies program that I met Grace Lee Boggs. She came to our closing ceremony in 2005 and somehow knew that I wanted to stick around Detroit, so she invited me to be her live-in assistant. Many years later, I served as the Community Engagement Coordinator at the Boggs School working with friends I had met those first two years in Detroit.”
She accepted the offer and moved to Detroit, beginning a new chapter that would come to define much of her career moving forward.
“I lived at the Boggs Center for two years and it really influenced the way I view the history of Detroit, as well as my perspective on grassroots organizing in neighborhoods. It also introduced me to people like Jackie, from Avalon, and other people that were doing great work with their communities. It not only shaped how I approach things as an organizer, but also as a legislator and Detroiter.”
Despite her growing commitment to service, politics didn’t enter the picture until later.
“Politics weren’t really on my radar. I was working as an organizer on a number of different issues — affirmative action, immigrant rights, voting rights, criminal justice reforms — then Rashida Tlaib and other friends asked me to consider running for office when Rashida reached her term limit. I was reluctant at first, but I ultimately realized it was a great opportunity to make a difference in a bigger way.”.
Boggs School connection
The James and Grace Lee Boggs School April 15 2019·
People's Convention 2019
In July Christopher Rashad Green, Isamar Ortega, D'Elena Camacho, Thomas Assefa were among the New Virginia Majority activists attending the Center for Popular Democracy's People's Convention 2019 in Detroit. The delegates posed with Linda Sarsour and Rep. Rashida Tlaib among others.
Now What? Defying Trump and the Left's Way Forward
Now What? Defying Trump and the Left's Way Forward was a phone in webinar organized by Freedom Road Socialist Organization in the wake of the 2016 election.
- Now what? We’re all asking ourselves that question in the wake of Trump’s victory. We’ve got urgent strategizing and work to do, together. Join Ash-Lee Woodard Henderson of the Movement for Black Lives and Freedom Road, Calvin Cheung-Miaw, Jodeen Olguin-Taylor of Mijente and WFP, Joe Schwartz of the Democratic Socialists of America, and Sendolo Diaminah of Freedom Road for a discussion of what happened, and what we should be doing to build mass defiance. And above all, how do we build the Left in this, which we know is the only solution to the crises we face?
- This event will take place Tuesday November 15, 2016 at 9pm Eastern/8pm Central/6pm Pacific.
Women’s March announced that U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) will open the Women’s Convention’s Friday evening program, which will take place in Detroit from Friday, October 27 to Sunday, October 29 2017.
Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-MI), Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI), Wendy Carrillo, and [Erica Ford] will also join the roster of over 60 women speakers, femmes, and allies of all backgrounds who will join thousands for a weekend of workshops, strategy sessions, inspiring forums and intersectional movement building. The theme of the Convention, “Reclaiming Our Time,” will honor U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), who will be headlining the Convention on Saturday evening.
“It was amazing to be part of the Women’s Marches and witness democracy in action...I fully expect to see that same turnout, passion and energy here in Detroit, and I look forward to speaking with women leaders from across the country,” said Senator Debbie Stabenow.
The growing list of speakers include: Angela Rye, Amber Tamblyn, Symone Sanders, Piper Perabo, Sally Kohn, Nomiki Konst, Leah Greenberg, Lilliana Reyes, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Rebecca Cokley, Nina Turner, Stephanie Schriock, Ai-jen Poo, Aida Hurtado, Lenore Anderson, Stephanie Chang, Raquel Castaneda Lopez, Melissa Mark-Viverito, Sarah Eagle Heart, Rashida Tlaib, Brittany Packnett, Winnie Wong, Stosh Cotler, and the Women’s March co-chairs Bob Bland, Carmen Perez, Linda Sarsour and Tamika Mallory.
Standing for Congress
When candidate Donald Trump visited Detroit in 2016, former Michigan legislator Rashida Tlaib stood up during his speech and urged him to read the US Constitution. "Our children deserve better," she said, before being escorted out by security.
Now, in 2018 she hopes to be a member of the "jury" that will move him out of the White House. Tlaib is running for Congress to be the first Muslim woman on Capitol Hill. Among her goals, she says, is impeaching the president and helping the people of Michigan's 13th Congressional district.
"This is about electing the jury that's going to impeach him, and I make a heck of a juror," Tlaib told Middle East Eye.
"I'm not going to let go of the fact that he has committed a number of crimes that will come to light when we start the impeachment hearings."
For me being a woman of Muslim faith, being Arab American, all of that factors into a slap in the face to those who think we don't belong here in this country
Besides his campaign's alleged collusion with Russia, Tlaib said, Trump is implicated in corruption and some of his policies are driven by financial self-interest.
Tlaib, a mother of two, is the oldest of 14 children in a Palestinian American family. In 2008, she became the first Muslim woman to be elected as a state representative. She is looking to fill the seat of Congressman John Conyers who retired last year after 52 years in Congress following sexual harassment accusations against him.
"Staying out of the ring is not an option," she said.
Tlaib said her priorities in Congress would be to increase home ownership among her constituents, push for fairer insurance policies, strengthen public education, improve public health and fight for environmental justice in the face of deregulations.
Rachid Elabed, the candidate's brother, lauded Tlaib's passion for equality, which he said has earned her respect from people of all races and ideologies. Elabed, a community organiser, said Tlaib taught him that change starts at the local level.
"She told me that as Arab Americans, we have to organise and work on domestic issues before we work on international issues," he said. "That's something that stuck with me."
Democratic Socialists of America
The Fight For Our Future
PDA 2020 endorsement
Rally to Count Every Vote
Metro Detroit Democratic Socialists of America is attending Detroit: Rally to Count Every Vote. November 4 2020.
DSA members, Rep Rashida Tlaib, recently elected State Rep Abraham Aiyash, & dynamic speaker/ organizer Yusef Bunchy Shakur gave powerful speeches demanding every vote be counted. We are defending the right to vote here in Detroit. Join us at the Detroit: Rally to Count Every Vote RIGHT NOW.
DSA in Congress
DSA NPC newsletter, August 20, 2020:
- Congress, too, saw some DSA wins, with Rashida Tlaib’s re-election and Cori Bush’s historical win over a 50+ year political dynasty. They’ll be joining DSA members Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Jamaal Bowman, as well as our friend Ilhan Omar.
Student debt town hall
Wayne State YDSA February 19 2020.
Thanks to everyone who came out to our student debt town hall last night, including our speakers Robbie Tribble and Thomas Gokey from Debt Collective, Hussein Beydoun from MI-CORE, and Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib. We are ready to organize and fight for #CollegeForAll!
Debs Dinner Comrades
Debs Dinner Comrades
Greater Detroit Democratic Socialists of America October 29 2019·
2019 Detroit DSA Douglass Debs Dinner Throwback Dana Martinez.
Greater Detroit Democratic Socialists of America October 3 at 5:30 AM · At this Saturday's Douglass-Debs Fundraiser Dinner,
⚡️ not only will we have Rep. Rashida Tlaib to chair and keynote the event,
⚡️ not only will we have a delicious dinner from Bandhu Gardens,
⚡️ not only will there be cake, a photo booth, and live music,
⚡️ ⚡️ ⚡️ We will joined by the one and only Dr. Abdul El-Sayed!!! ⚡️ ⚡️ ⚡️
El-Sayed is a relentless champion for Medicare for All, a longtime friend of Detroit DSA, and a fighter on the left in Michigan. We cannot wait to see him on Saturday!
This year's Douglass-Debs Dinner is NOT TO BE MISSED.
Soliciting legislation ideas from DSA
From "DSA Resolutions for the 2019 Convention".
- Whereas when General Motors announced plant closings and mass layoffs in 2018, Detroit DSA organized a demonstration demanding that the government seize the Detroit plant by eminent domain and use it to address the climate emergency and build green infrastructure, and a coalition of environmental, labor, and community organizations in Detroit formed around these demands and this radical vision for a Green New Deal.
- Whereas Rep. Rashida Tlaib (MI-13), a member of DSA who was part of that coalition, asked Detroit DSA to develop legislative ideas in furtherance of a Green New Deal and to present them to her and her staff.
- Whereas DSA determined that the Rust Belt should be the “Engine of the Green New Deal,” meaning that much of the green infrastructure (solar panels, wind turbines, electric transit, etc.) needed to avert a climate catastrophe should be manufactured in the Rust Belt, where millions of people already have manufacturing expertise and experience, and hundreds of underused or idled manufacturing facilities already exist.
- Whereas Detroit DSA determined that this goal should be achieved through what it calls the “Great Lakes Authority” (GLA), a new, federal, regional planning agency (enacted through federal legislation under the umbrella of the “Green New Deal”) with the mandate to bring green union jobs, environmental justice, and sustainable economic development to the Great Lakes region.
- Whereas the GLA would prioritize (1) creating green, prevailing-wage, union-backed jobs, including in green manufacturing, (2) creating millions of zero-carbon public housing units and weatherizing existing homes, and (3) restoring the region’s infrastructure, including its energy and water systems; its roads, bridges, and waterways; and its public transit, and be guided by the principles of (1) local control, (2) worker dignity, and (3) a just transition.
- Whereas Detroit DSA has shared the idea of the GLA with great success in print and social media, as well as in person at labor events, in community forums and town halls, at the Midwest DSA Regional Convention, etc.
- Whereas, in light of these efforts, DSA members from across the Rust Belt (including Detroit, Chicago, Milwaukee, Toledo, Flint, Cleveland, Columbus, Huron Valley, Cincinnati, and Pittsburgh) are now actively thinking through the idea of the GLA, what such a unifying demand could mean for our ecosocialist work, and organizing to make the GLA a reality. 
Greater Lansing DSA
On October 5, 2017, the Greater Lansing Democratic Socialists of America hosted a discussion about development in Lansing and the need for a community benefits ordinance to ensure that the people of Lansing actually benefit from tax incentives. Rashida Tlaib (Sugar Law Center) and Miguel Pope (Detroit People's Platform) presented their experiences in working to implement a community benefits ordinance in Detroit.
Detroit DSA meeting
Members who attended the Greater Detroit Democratic Socialists of America's chapter's February 2018 meeting were greeted by rows of folding chairs. Despite the recommendation of the reforms group, a Democrat Congressional hopeful was to speak to the chapter. Rashida Tlaib, a former state representative from Southwest Detroit, is running for the seat left vacant by John Conyers.
After delivering a 20-minute pitch that checked off quite a few progressive boxes — Tlaib works at the Sugar Law Center for Economic and Social Justice, and took on corporate welfare and polluting companies as a state legislator — the membership started firing off pointed questions to gauge Tlaib's feelings on socialism.
"DSA nationally as an organization has been looking to recognize socialist candidates — people who are running as open socialists. Will you run as a socialist?" asked a young woman.
"Yeah, um it's, it's — we got to win," Tlaib said with a laugh. "Honestly let me tell you, and somehow we got to hijack that back, but people have tainted that word, and honestly, going door to door, regular voters don't really understand. They don't even understand when I talk about the Green Party ... [they think it's] anti-Democrat."
She went on to describe the board at the Sugar Law Center as being comprised of "pretty much socialists" whom she "loves." Tlaib said she did expect to be called a socialist by her opponents, but hearing that she may be the subject of so-called "red-baiting" tactics was of no comfort to the crowd. The organization has taken great pains to disassociate from the authoritarian regimes it says have abused socialism and tarnished its name. The "democratic" in DSA is intended to distinguish its brand of socialism from the Marxist–Leninist inspired socialism that allowed for dictatorships. DSA's emblem includes a red rose, which has historically been an important symbol for anti-authoritarian groups.
"When the opposition calls you a socialist, what will you do?" an older gentleman asks.
"I say if I was, what would be wrong with it?" Tlaib says. "And I explain, the fact of the matter is the labor movement was founded on socialism ... I try to explain that history."
Another member presses her further on the issue — pointing out that Sanders, who openly identified as a democratic socialist, ran a successful campaign in Michigan.
"While I agree with you it's a pretty dicey conversation when you go door to door, I do think that because you're running in Detroit, I think in the context of what happened in Michigan with Bernie, you should just give that some more thought," the DSA member says.
Tlaib reiterates that "there's just a sense of fear because we want to win."
2018 DSA support
According to Dick Olson the "2018 midterm elections were incredibly momentous for DSA nationally, as well as here in the Detroit area. We scored critical wins from coast to coast — getting leftists elected to office and pushing through key ballot measures".
Most critically, two DSA members were elected to Congress — Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez from New York’s 14th district and Rashida Tlaib from Michigan’s 13th district. These victories have shaken things up in D.C., and put DSA on the national political map.
Detroit DSA’s marquee endorsement of this election cycle was Rashida Tlaib, who is a card-carrying DSA members. During a hard-fought Democratic primary for the 13th Congressional district, Detroit DSA members knocked on hundreds of doors for Tlaib and helped her win 27,803 to 26,916 over her nearest competitor, a member of Detroit’s city council. Tlaib, a Palestinian-American who has served in the Michigan legislature, then went on to win an overwhelming 85% victory in the general election.
Greater Detroit Democratic Socialists of America, May 24 at 2:59pm.
- We are proud to endorse Rashida Tlaib For Congress! She is a DSA member, and will be a great Congresswoman! Learn more about her campaign here: https://www.rashidaforcongress.com
From Metro Detroit Democratic Socialists of America newsletter July 2018.
Electoral Committee Updates
- The next meeting of the Electoral Committee will be TOMORROW, July 16 at 7.00 pm, to discuss how the primary activity is going and start organizing for the general election. ALL MEMBERS WELCOME, email Gillian at email@example.com for meeting location info.
- For the first time ever we have endorsed FOUR candidates running in Democratic primaries who are Chapter members! They are:
- Rashida Tlaib, running for Congress, 13th District
- Mike McDermott, running for State Rep, District 16
- Michele Oberholtzer, running for State Rep, District 4
- Joel Batterman, running for Wayne County Commission, District 2
- In addition, we have jointly endorsed Andy Levin and Ellen Cogen Lipton in the 9th Congressional District, finding both equally deserving of support. Members are encouraged to support either candidate and the Chapter will support whichever of the two candidates wins the primary election.
- There is less than a month until the primary on Tuesday, August 8 and much work to do to help our DSA candidates succeed.
National Nurses United endorsement
Michael Moore connection
Rashida Tlaib July 29.
This happened. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is exactly as you see her...strong, humble and so real. I can't wait to walk through the halls of U.S. Congress along her side. #RashidaforCongress #9days Volunteer at www.rashidaforcongress.com — at Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
DSA North Star Online Conference
DSA North Star Online Conference Sunday September 16, 2018:
Part 1. Introduction and National Perspectives 40 minutes Introduction. What is North Star about? What do we wish to accomplish? How do we do it? We’ll begin this meet up by hearing from DSA members active in governing, electoral politics, and organizing. How have DSA members successfully organized around electoral politics?
- Miriam Bensman - NYC DSA involvement in Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez campaign & Cynthia Nixon-Jumaane Williams endorsements
- Natasha Fernandez-Silber and Tony Eggert - Detroit DSA and Rashida Tlaib campaign
- Mike Sylvester - Maine State House Rep since 2016 on being DSA member in office
- Eric Robertson - Atlanta Metro DSA and Stacey Abrams for GA gov campaign & other southern campaigns
Our Revolution influence
Our Revolution has over 200,000 members and 600 groups across the country (and a few in Europe). Under David Duhalde’s tenure, Our Revolution won over 70 races in the 2018 general election cycle, including electing Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, and Deb Haaland to the U.S. House of Representatives.
"Green New Deal"
We have the momentum to make a Green New Deal real, but we need a critical mass of Congresspeople to support the proposal.
Take action on Dec. 10 to show Congress the Green New Deal is a top priority.
Congressional supporters by December 1 2018:
- Jared Huffman (CA-02)
- Jackie Speier (CA-14)
- Ro Khanna (CA-17)
- Mike Levin (CA-49)
- Ted Lieu (CA-33)
- John Lewis (GA-05)
- Joe Neguse (CO-02)
- Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02)
- Chellie Pingree (ME-01)
- Jamie Raskin (MD-08)
- Ayanna Pressley (MA-07)
- Rashida Tlaib (MI-13)
- Ilhan Omar (MN-05)
- Deb Haaland (NM-01)
- Carolyn Maloney (NY-12)
- Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-14)
- Jose Serrano (NY-15)
- Earl Blumenauer (OR-03)
Sunrise slate 2018
Sunrise Movement August 2 2018:
We're thrilled to introduce you to our first-ever round of candidate endorsements: the #SunriseSlate2018!
These candidates are some of the earliest adopters of the #NoFossilFuelMoney pledge and, if elected, would lead the fight against oil and gas lobbyists in state capitols and Washington, DC. They’re putting forward big policy solutions to the climate crisis, like championing a Green New Deal and supporting a just and rapid transition to a 100% renewable energy future that leaves no community behind.
Learn more and support our efforts here! https://www.sunrisemovement.org/2018-endorsed-candidates — with Katie Muth for PA Senate, Deb Haaland for Congress, Alessandra Biaggi, Kaniela Ing, Jess King for Congress, Julia Salazar for State Senate, Dana Hamp Gulick for PA 97th, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Representative Anna Eskamani, Abdul El-Sayed, Danielle Friel Otten for PA District 155, Cynthia Nixon for New York, Benjamin Jealous, Jumaane D. Williams, Ilhan Omar for Congress, Randy Bryce, Zellnor Myrie for New York and Rashida Tlaib For Congress, Penelope Tsernoglou Michigan State House, Michele Wherley Pennsylvania State House. .
Green New Deal
Greater Detroit Democratic Socialists of America’s mobilization around the Green New Deal started November 2018, when GM announced that despite earning record profits in 2018, it would be closing five plants in North America (including two in Michigan) and laying off 14,000 workers.
In December, Detroit DSA organized a screening of the 1983 documentary Poletown Lives!, which tells how Poletown residents valiantly fought to save their neighborhood. Some 250 outraged Detroiters attended, including newly-minted U.S. Representative Rashida Tlaib, who is a member of Detroit DSA. Tlaib spoke on a panel alongside the film’s director and Sean Crawford, a Detroit DSAer who until this February worked at the Poletown Plant.
Encouraged by our success, we set out to organize a mass action at the annual Auto Show Charity Preview, a ritzy event commonly called “Auto Prom.” We planned to protest GM’s criminal incompetence, its degradation of the environment, and its ceaseless efforts to roll back domestic auto production. But we also wanted to make clear that the problem wasn’t just GM and its “greed”—it was that the fates of countless people are in the hands of profit-seeking corporations.
In collaboration with local labor, environmental, and racial justice groups, we developed three demands: for GM to honor its labor contract and keep the plants open; for any idled plants to be seized via eminent domain and put to green, public use; and for a Green New Deal, which would include a federal union jobs guarantee, rapid decarbonization of the economy, and a just transition. Our rallying cry was “Make Detroit the Engine of a Green New Deal.”
On January 18, over 400 protesters carried bright yellow and green signs (all designed and hand-printed by DSAers) that read, “Detroit Demands a Green New Deal,” “Seize the Plant, Save the Planet,” “Justice for Poletown,” “Green Union Jobs Now,” and “Eminent Domain: Take Over GM.”
As elites in tuxedos and cocktail dresses attempted to enter the gala (without making eye contact), they were confronted by protesters shouting, “Make better life choices!” and “Which side are you on?” The chants were buoyed by DSA’s newly assembled Detroit People’s Marching Band, which provided a joyous sonic background. DSA members marched alongside rank-and-file UAW and Unifor (Canadian auto) workers, radical Brazilian unionists, students, and activists from a wide swath of community groups. Protesters wore yellow vests in solidarity with the gilets jaunes in France.
“Let’s not forget what happened to Poletown,” said Rashida Tlaib over the megaphone. “Let’s not forget every single person that gave up so much for that plant in Hamtramck to be built—and for them to [just] walk away. So I am telling you, I stand with our UAW leaders, but I am for accountability today. If you [GM] leave, I want our money back. If you leave, I want our plant back. I want every single thing we ever gave you back. Because that’s what we deserve.”
Using the GM plant closures as a springboard to call for radical economic reforms in the form of a Green New Deal has struck a nerve in Detroit and around the nation. At least 20 articles were written about the Auto Show rally. The action not only saw DSA strengthened as a force in Detroit politics, it gave rise to the Detroit Coalition for a Green New Deal, which is seeking public hearings around our demands.
Coalition for a Green New Deal
Greater Detroit Democratic Socialists of America January 18:
Rep. Rashida Tlaib standing with the Coalition for a Green New Deal protest at the Auto Show Charity Preview ("Auto Prom"). Stop the GM plant closings and re-tool the factories for green manufacturing.
We demand a Green New Deal that takes us on a path to rapid decarbonization of the economy, implements a federal union jobs guarantee, and ensures a just transition for workers, people of color, the poor, and other marginalized groups.
On Saturday April 13 2019 100 union members, labor activists, and allies met on the Wayne State campus for a Troublemakers School sponsored by the national publication Labor Notes: a day of skill-sharing and strategizing about workplace organizing. Detroit DSA-ers helped with the planning for the day, which drew participants from as far as Kalamazoo and Lansing. Sixteen DSA members were in the mix.
Though it was gray and drizzling outside, the energy at Troublemakers School was strong all day, closing out with a call from Rashida Tlaib to continue fighting alongside her. Detroit DSA co-chair Natasha Fernandez-Silber spoke about how the Green New Deal could be enacted in the Rust Belt: “We need light rail, we need electric buses, we need electric vehicles. Let’s do it here.”
Green New Deal panelists and Labor Notes workshop leaders pose with Rashida Tlaib. Left to right: Natasha Fernandez-Silber, Joe Demanuelle-Hall, Jane Slaughter, Sean Crawford, Bianca Cunningham, Chris Brooks, Rashida Tlaib, Rebecca Keetch.
HR 109 endorser
“Road to the Green New Deal”
On April 19, 2019, Detroit DSA co-hosted the Sunrise Movement’s “Road to the Green New Deal” speaking tour stop in Detroit. Speakers included Rep. Rashida Tlaib, Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, Dorthea Thomas of Good Jobs Now, and Detroit DSA Co-Chair Natasha Fernandez-Silber.
Millennials For Revolution
In December 2018 Millennials For Revolution called for "progressives" Rashida Tlaib, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Pramila Jayapal, Ro Khanna, Katie Porter to be appointed to key Congressinioal Committees.
- DSA is organizing a congressional campaign. California Democrat Ro Khanna and Washington Democrat Pramila Jayapal are circulating a letter "rejected threats of US Military intervention in Venezuela, supporting dialogue to resolve the political crisis there, and opposing broad economic sanctions that hurt ordinary civilians." The letter urges support for a mediation process advocated by the governments of Mexico and Uruguay to promote dialogue. Contact your Congressperson, especially members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, to sign the letter.
Signatories by February 15 deadline included Ro Khanna, Pramila Jayapal, Mark Pocan, Raul Grijalva, Ilhan Omar, Hank Johnson, Adriano Espaillat, Rashida Tlaib, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley, Nydia Velazquez.
Medicare for All Act
In February 2019 Rep. Pramila Jayapal introduced H.R.1384 - Medicare for All Act of 2019. By May 29 she had 110 co-sponsors including Rep. Rashida Tlaib.
- TlaibTeam is more energized than ever. #9daystogo #RashidaforCongress Be part of our historic campaign and sign up at www.rashidaforcongress.com @ocasio2018 — with Carla Underwood, Lisa Ten Ten and Oscar Arbulu.
PDA 2018 endorsement
Jennifer Epps-Addison November 16 2018:
She the People 2018 Summit
She the People's three-year initiative kicked off with its inaugural She the People Summit on September 20, 2018 at the Julia Morgan Ballroom in San Francisco. The sold-out, first-ever national summit of women of color in politics drew nearly 600 attendees, mostly women of color, from 36 states.
Speakers included Rashida Tlaib.
CPC new members
2018 Congressional Progressive Caucus new members included Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, Deb Haaland, Veronica Escobar, Jesus Garcia, Joe Neguse, Andy Levin, Mike Levin.
Rashida Tlaib MI 13 was endorsed by Justice Democrats for 2018.
Resolution calling for a final settlement of the Korean War
February 26, 2019 Press Release
Washington, DC – As President Trump arrives to Hanoi, Vietnam, Rep. Ro Khanna, along with eighteen Democratic Members of Congress, have introduced a resolution calling for a final settlement of the Korean War, now officially in its 68th year.
The resolution -- which is backed by former President and Nobel Peace Laureate Jimmy Carter and a range of Korean-American and pro-diplomacy organizations -- urges the Trump Administration to provide a clear roadmap to achieve a final peace settlement while highlighting the importance of reciprocal actions and confidence-building measures between the parties.
“Historic engagement between South and North Korea has created a once-in-a-generation opportunity to formally end this war,” said Rep. Ro Khanna, a member of the House Armed Services Committee. “President Trump must not squander this rare chance for peace. He should work hand in hand with our ally, South Korean President Moon Jae-in, to bring the war to a close and advance toward the denuclearization of the peninsula.”
“I commend this important resolution that will help bring this nearly 70 year conflict to a close,” said President Jimmy Carter. “I have visited North Korea several times to talk with their leadership and study the best path forward for peace. Ending the threat of war is the only way to ensure true security for both the Korean and American people and will create the conditions to alleviate the suffering of the ordinary North Koreans who are most harmed by ongoing tensions.”
Co-led by prominent progressive Reps. Andy Kim, Barbara Lee, Pramila Jayapal, Deb Haaland, and Jan Schakowsky, the resolution calls on the Trump Administration to make greater efforts to include women in the peace process, citing the Women, Peace, and Security Act of 2017 which Trump signed into law. Women’s rights icon Gloria Steinem, founder of the peace group Women Cross DMZ, published an op-ed in the Washington Post on Sunday in support of the resolution.
The resolution clarifies that ending the war does not necessitate a withdrawal of US troops from Korea or an acceptance of North Korea as a legitimate nuclear power. The resolution calls on the Administration to continue the repatriation of servicemember remains, and expand cooperation to achieve reunions of divided Korean and Korean-American families and facilitate people-to-people exchanges and humanitarian cooperation.
Rep. Khanna has been a consistent voice for diplomacy on the Korean Peninsula. Shortly after Trump threatened “fire and fury” against North Korea, Khanna was joined by over 70 Congressmembers on his bipartisan “No Unconstitutional Strike on North Korea Act”, which would reinforce existing law prohibiting an unauthorized and unprovoked strike on North Korea. He has also been critical of those in both parties who have sought to restrict flexibility in negotiations, instead urging support for the diplomatic approach of our South Korean ally and its President, Moon Jae-in.
Rep. Khanna will travel to Atlanta next week to sit down with Pres. Carter to discuss developments on the Korean Peninsula and solicit guidance from the Nobel Laureate about how the next generation of policymakers can best pursue a pro-diplomacy agenda for America.
Current original cosponsors (18): Pramila Jayapal, Mark Pocan, Barbara Lee, Deb Haaland, Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Jan Schakowsky, Raúl Grijalva, Bobby Rush, Eddie Bernice Johnson, Tulsi Gabbard, Adriano Espaillat, Andy Kim, Rashida Tlaib, Judy Chu, Jose Serrano, Gwen Moore.
The resolution is endorsed by organizations including the National Association of Korean Americans, Ploughshares Fund, Women Cross DMZ, Korean Americans in Action, United Methodist Church – Global Ministries, Win Without War, Peace Action, American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL), Just Foreign Policy, Beyond the Bomb, and Physicians for Social Responsibility.
"Black Women in Defense of Ilhan Omar"
Activist Angela Davis and Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) joined numerous other black women activists and members of Congress in a rally Tuesday April 30 2019 rally to support Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.).
Davis and Barbara Ransby, a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago and adviser to the Movement for Black Lives, told Democracy Now they planned the event, called Black Women in Defense of Ilhan Omar, in response to escalating attacks against the freshman Democrat, who said death threats against her spiked after conservatives accused her of minimizing the 9/11 attacks and President Trump tweeted a video interspersing her words with images from the attacks.
Trump, Davis said, “uses this bizarre logic of fungibility, where one Muslim represents the worst—or all Muslims, rather, represent the worst deeds that any Muslim has ever conducted,” a logical process she said was “at the heart of racism.”
“Trump has been vitriolic toward so many groups, but I think there’s a particular venom when it comes to black women,” Ransby added, citing both his attacks on Omar and his frequent taunts of Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) and his 2017 feud with Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-Fla.), who accused him of making a Gold Star widow cry by telling her that her late husband, Sgt. La David Johnson, “knew what he signed up for.”
“I am changing the things I can no longer accept, and from R. Kelly to Donald Trump, what we can no longer accept is the silencing of black women,” Pressley, who, like Omar, was elected to Congress in 2018, said at the event. “We are reclaiming our rightful place.”
- Rashida Tlaib's website: About (accessed on Jan. 19, 2011)
- [http://www.mlive.com/news/kalamazoo/index.ssf/2008/11/rashida_tlaib_is_first_muslim.html Mlive.com Rashida Tlaib is first Muslim woman to be elected to Michigan Legislature Published: Thursday, November 06, 2008]
- People For the American Way Action Fund Michigan candidates bio
- People For the American Way Action Fund Michigan candidates bio
- Progressive States Network: State Legislators for Progressive Health Care Reform (accessed on Dec. 23, 2010)
- Oakland Press LIVE VIDEO: From Michigan Summit on green jobs with Van Jones Published: Saturday, June 12, 2010
- People For the American Way Action Fund Michigan candidates bio
- AAPAC website, Oct. 26, 2010 (accessed on Feb. 15, 2011)
- Accessed on March 28 2019
- Accessed on March 28 2019
- US labor Against the War press release Organizations Nationwide and Key Public Figures Tell FBI: Stop Your Witch-hunt! October 20th, 2010
- The Muslim Observer, MDP ConventionMUSLIM MEDIA NETWORK 28FEB 2013 By Faiz Khan and TMO Staff
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