Advertisement

City of Brass

City of Brass

Chris Christie defending Muslim Americans

This is just an amazing video from last year of Chris Christie, governor of Jew Jersey (and likely contender for the Republican nomination in 2016):

Suhail Mohammed is an Indian-born American Muslim lawyer who was appointed as a judge by Christie in NJ. It should be noted that Christie will probably face a challenge for the NJ governorship by democrat Cory Booker, who has extremely strong ties to the AIPAC Israeli/Likud lobby (which are overtly Islamophobic), as MJ Rosenberg points out:

Advertisement

Booker is a true believer, involved with Israel and AIPAC since his early 20?s, in large part due to his close friendship with ultra-Orthodox Rabbi Shmuely Boteach. Boteach is a right-wing Republican who is currently running as such for Congress in New Jersey. Here is a video of the two together at an AIPAC fundraiser. Boteach’s description of Booker’s involvement with Israel is extraordinary.

My point here is to underscore the point I made earlier with my endorsement of Obama – that Muslim Americans need to be aware of the issues and align with elected officials who speak directly to our issues rather than become yet another interest group. Democrats like Booker are not automatically preferable to Republicans like Christie, and especially for Muslim Americans in New Jersey the associations and positions of these two politicians should be taken into account during the next gubernatorial election. The same will hold true for the next Presidential election cycle.

Advertisement

Now, of course Christie is also a politician, one with whom I profoundly disagree with on policy issues that also affect Muslim Americans (including the African American community), so don’t read any endorsement of Christie into my words here. The defense of Suhail Mohammed in the video above was also a shrewd political move:

[Christie] has committed himself to threading a very difficult needle, appeasing New Jersey’s left-of-center swing voters in order to survive in 2013 without doing serious damage to the image that has made him a hero to national Republicans and a future White House prospect.

Advertisement

In this context, his defense of Sohail Mohammed is something approaching a political masterstroke. To win over New Jersey’s swing voters, Christie needs them to see his occasional tirades as outbursts of nonpartisan, non-ideological common sense, and not as grandstanding for national conservatives. This latest clip is a step in that direction. At the same time, it doesn’t do serious damage to his positioning on the national stage. As Politico’s Jonathan Martin noted last week, the national G.O.P.’s “professional class” shares Christie’s disdain for overt Muslim-baiting. His standing in their eyes has only improved because of his willingness to decry counterproductive bigotry in his own party.

So, this is also about positioning for 2016, and cultivating appeal not just to segments of the GOP who were marginalized by the Tea Party and are now enjoying some resurgence in the wake of Obama’s win, but also in appealing to moderate and independent voters. Like myself, and other Muslim Americans. But what’s wrong with that?

The bottom line is that Christie is worth watching and deserves consideration.

Advertisement
Comments Post the First Comment »
post a comment

Comments are closed.



Previous Posts

Obama quoted my letter about my daughter
This is a guest post by Ali Asghar Alibhai. There is no question that the America my generation grew up in is much different than the America of now. I grew up in West Texas, a place that some might consider as among the most conservative in ...

posted 1:30:00pm Feb. 04, 2016 | read full post »

Who was Saudi Shi'a Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr?
Yesterday, the Saudi government executed the Shi'a cleric, Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, as an enemy of the state. His ...

posted 2:12:32pm Jan. 03, 2016 | read full post »

Hijab Wars
It's fundamentally problematic for a man to weigh in on hijab. That hasn't stopped me from wading into the topic before (see: The Burka and the Bikini), but the only conversation of substance that can happen on the topic is between Muslim women, ...

posted 3:13:28am Dec. 22, 2015 | read full post »

Misquoted verses in the Qur'an (and the Bible)
This is a popular graphic that makes the ruonds on Facebook from time to time, so I thought I'd publish it here for reference. These five verses are among the most common ones that Islamophobes use to justify arguments that Muslims are evil ...

posted 12:15:12pm Dec. 15, 2015 | read full post »

Trump, the cartoon enemy
It needs to be said - that Trump is a symptom, not a disease. There has been a GOP War on Muslims for years, and despite heroic efforts by Republican Muslim Americans to sway opinion, the bottom line is that Muslim hatred is a prerequisite for ...

posted 12:50:28pm Dec. 11, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.