News Revelations

Cruz snubs Muslim advocacy groups

U.S. Republican presidential candidate Senator Ted Cruz speaks in Kansas where he won the caucus March 5. REUTERS/Dave Kaup

 

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WASHINGTON (RNS) Muslim groups say Sen. Ted Cruz and his Capitol Hill staff refused to see them during an annual lobbying day in which hundreds of Muslim constituents met with their senators and representatives.

On Monday (April 18), while Cruz was in New York, campaigning in advance of Tuesday’s presidential primaries in that state, a group of 14 Muslim Texans marking “National Muslim Advocacy Day” went to the candidate’s Washington office.

The group knew the senator was out of town, said U.S. Council of Muslim Organizations Secretary General Oussama Jammal, but would have been happy to meet with a member of his staff. They were refused, he said, and had for weeks tried to set up a meeting.

“We are quite disappointed to see a presidential candidate refuse to meet with constituents from his own state,” Jammal said. “This is a sad day for America.”

He said Cruz, who has offended Muslims with his call for surveillance of Muslim neighborhoods, could have used the opportunity to show that he can represent all Americans.

More than 300 Muslim-Americans met with one-third of U.S. House members and nearly half of all senators for the lobbying event, according to the USCMO, which organized it.

Sen. Cruz’s press office did not respond immediately to questions about the USCMO’s charge. The advocacy group planned a press conference on the matter Monday evening.

The USMCO said its delegates talked to members of Congress about Islamophobia, concerns over the federal Countering Violence Extremism program, promoting access to healthy food in impoverished areas and other planks in the group’s domestic agenda.

The USCMO’s founding members are: American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), Muslim Alliance in North America (MANA), Muslim American Society (MAS), Muslim Legal Fund of America (MLFA), Muslim Ummah of North America (MUNA), The Mosque Cares (Ministry of Imam W. Deen Mohammed).

 

About the author

Lauren Markoe

Lauren Markoe has been a national reporter for RNS since 2011. Previously she covered government and politics as a daily reporter at the Charlotte Observer and The State (Columbia, S.C.)

7 Comments

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  • I’m sure Teddie the dominionist subscribes to the notion that “religious freedom” doesn’t apply to Muslims in the US. He wouldn’t be the first Religious Rightist to go along with that; it certainly is not a new idea.

    For that matter, some in the R.R. have stated that only Christians have “religious freedom” in the US. Not just Muslims, but presumably Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, etc. as well as non-believers have no “religious freedom” rights, by that scheme. Pretty dangerous thinking, if you ask me; but then, Teddie and his ilk don’t really care what a cynical, cold-hearted, godless agnostic heathen like myself thinks about anything.

  • “He said Cruz, who has offended Muslims with his call for surveillance of Muslim neighborhoods, could have used the opportunity to show that he can represent all Americans.”

    Could it be because these “constituents from his own state” have, thusfar, failed to denounce terrorist acts committed by Daesh (Dawlat al-Islamiyah f’al-Iraq wa al-Sham), aka: ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) & ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant)?

  • Warriors/Soldiers of and for Islam, want special “religious” disposition to effectively and affectively practice their “religion” with-out interference from law enforcement. This would allow them to carry out beheadings, bombings and other killings, along with female mutilations, and their new sport of throwing gays from roof-tops, which if done correctly could become an Olympic Sport, and Cruz had the audacity to ignore them and their pleas, geez Ted, that is not very Christian of you. The Hilda-Beast and Commie Bernie will have something to say about that.

  • Nope. In fact such denunciations are pretty common among American Muslims. But it is inconvenient to acknowledge such things when you demonize an entire religion for political gain.

  • And yet there are no instances of any of that in American Muslim communities. Go figure. Somehow people here don’t act like those in THE WORST DICTATORSHIPS IN THE WORLD. Who would have thunk it?

    “and their new sport of throwing gays from roof-tops, which if done correctly could become an Olympic Sport,”

    I know. American Christians are so jealous they didn’t think of it first. Many of Cruz’s supporters have no problem with stuff like that provided that it is Christian Dominionists who are doing it, not Muslims.

  • Re: “Warriors/Soldiers of and for Islam, want special ‘religious’ disposition to effectively and affectively practice their ‘religion’ with-out interference from law enforcement.”

    Right. Precisely the same as warriors/soldiers for Jesus demanding to be exempted from discrimination laws, so they can be free to ostracize and oppress gays and other “undesirables.” There’s absolutely no meaningful difference between them.

    But even with that said, I’ve never heard of Muslims in the US demanding any such thing. So put away your “straw man.”

  • Of course, the great majority of Christians are not anti-otherbelievers like Ted Cruz — just like the great majority of people in general, regardless of their beliefs, do not subscribe to Cruz’s so-called “morality” (i.e., the kind that confuses moral superiority with elitist ignorance).

    However, I do note that, so far, the only commenters here who are standing up to Mr. Cruz’s brand of self-righteous vilification are an agnostic, an atheist (myself), and a third person whose beliefs are unstated. I would really like to see respectful Christian commenters join us.

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