Democrat Rashida Tlaib
Rashida Tlaib, 44, born to Palestinian immigrants, first won election to the US House in 2018. She is the first Palestinian American in Congress representing Michigan’s 13th district.
The eldest of 14 children, the former lawyer, and community activist was born in Detroit, a diverse city with a sizeable Black, Latino, Muslim and Arab population.
She has advocated for progressive causes such as raising the minimum wage, universal healthcare, affordable university tuition, and environmental protections.
One of the most visible progressive Democrats in Congress, Tlaib is a member of the “Squad” of four congresswomen first elected which also includes Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, and Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts.
Tlaib and the other members of the “Squad” are frequent targets of Trump during his rallies and in tweets.
“Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came,” he said last year in a tweet which has been blasted as racist.
….and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful nation on earth, how our government is to be run. Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime-infested places from which they came? Then come back and show us how….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump)
Democrat Ilhan Omar
Ilhan Omar, 37, fled civil war in Somalia and spent four years of her childhood in a refugee camp in Kenya. She sought asylum in the US in 1995, when she was eight years old and became an American citizen in 2000 at the age of 17.
She made history two years ago when she became the first Somali-American in the country to win a seat in a state legislature, unseating an incumbent Democrat along the way. She also became one of the first two Muslim women to be elected to Congress.
She is expected to win again in November in the solidly Democratic 5th district of Minnesota.
Like Tlaib, Omar has campaigned on policies associated with the Democratic Party’s most progressive wing, and is well-known as a member of the “Squad” of four freshman liberal congresswomen.
She won this year’s Democratic primary, defeating a well-funded rival Antone Melton-Meaux, and several other challengers.
A fierce critic of Trump, especially on his immigration policies, she hit back at the president after he disparaged her during a campaign rally last month, after he implied that she was not American.
“Not only is he a racist, but he’s a racist xenophobic. Because he’s not against immigration, he’s just against immigrants who look like me,” Omar told CNN.