An article by Newsweek describes and follows the connection between ‘Muslim’ and the 2008 US presidential election, from fabrications concerning president-elect Obama’s religious background to the rise in Muslims working on the campaign and surge in Muslim support for Barack Obama.
In this election, many Muslim Americans changed their party affiliation from Republican to Democratic – a stark change from the strong Muslim support for George Bush in 2000. Today, more than 2/3 of Muslim Americans consider themselves to be Democrats, while just four percent see themselves as Republican.
A major rift and shift occurred as many Muslim Americans became subject to wiretapping, mishandling of civil liberties, religious, ethnic, and racial profiling, in addition to mounting concerns over the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. With an estimated 89 percent of Muslim Americans voting for Obama, many cite him as the American every-person, the quintessential American mutt with veins to a pluralistic and diverse background that many in the diverse Muslim American community can relate to.
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New York Times video coverage of Muslim voting in 2008 presidential election.
Video available here courtesy of the New York Times.
Welsh Tories are making an attempt to bring the country’s Muslims into their fold. In the past, these communities have mostly seen the Labour Party as their natural home but this is now changing, Welsh Conservative leader Nick Bourne told the inaugural meeting of the Welsh Conservative Forum in Cardiff. “Following our landslide defeat in 1997, the Conservative Party recognised that it had to change,” Mr Bourne said. “If we were to regain power, we had to become more representative of the people we wanted to serve in government. A party capable of representing all Britain and all Britons.
“On his election as Leader, David Cameron promised to reach out to minority ethnic communities and to recognise the contribution immigrants have made to our prosperity and culture. “And I am determined that we should do so in Wales as well. I believe the Welsh Conservative Muslim Forum marks an important milestone on the road to increasing Conservative engagement with the Muslim community. “In many ways, Muslim values are Conservative values. We all believe in strong families, in enterprise, in self reliance and in individual responsibility.
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Arab and Muslim candidates fared poorly in the first round of French municipal elections, with only one elected to a local office and few others with opportunity in the second round of voting. Running on the Socialist slate, Samia Ghali won District 8 in Marseille, the country’s second largest city. Ghali became the first Muslim among France’s 36 000 municipal leaders. Justice minister Rachida Dati, of Moroccan origin, faces stiff challenge from her Socialist rival in the 7th District of Paris. Other candidates, Socialist Karim Bougoma and Razi Hamadi of the Rassemblement Pour R_publique have little to no chance of winning a seat, winning only 26.11 and 17.63 of the votes in the first round. In the country more generally, president Sarkozy’s Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) conceded more ground to the rival Socialists.
Ahead of the March 4th presidential primary in Ohio, many Muslims in Ohio are lending their support to Barack Obama. While a large majority of Muslims backed George W. Bush eight years ago, there is strong support among American Muslims coalescing around Obama. Exasperation among Cleveland’s 60,000 Muslims, who are mostly middle-class and naturalize citizens, are feeling frustrated with the on-going war in Iraq, the stigmatization of Islam after September 11th, and hold concern for their civil rights. Shiite Muslims in the Shiite Unity Center supported Bush in 2000 – but now says he is voting for Obama. Though a Christian, many cite his diverse background, and precisely a relatable background, as attractive in the presidential hopeful.
Belgians began voting on Sunday in an election expected to replace Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt with the premier of Flanders who wants more power for his Dutch-speaking region, where 60 percent of Belgians live.Early on Sunday, reflecting Belgium’s firm linguistic divide, it was expected that voters in the country’s francophone and Dutch-speaking communities will elect separate parties that must eventually form a coalition to govern the whole country.Turks with Belgian citizenship also participated in the elections, both as voters and candidates. 36 Turks have been named candidates in the elections on all sides of the political spectrum.
Dutch Moroccan barely make use of their newly acquired voting right in Morocco, according to Moroccan newspaper As-Sabah. Moroccans living abroad may vote and be elected in the upcoming parliamentary elections in September, but due to practical impediments, lack of information and a bad image of Moroccan politics there is barely any interest. In order to vote Dutch Moroccan must come to Morocco in September. In contrast to other countries, Morocco does not enable voting in consulates of embassies. However, Dutch Moroccans have to register as voters in a consulate, possible till last Friday. According to As-Sabah, basing itself on consular sources, there was no interest. The only people who registered were representatives of immigrant organizations and people who had to come for other reasons to the consulate.
The fatwa below is the one that allegedly inspired the recent twelve-page document titled, “Participation in the Elections,” circulating in Brussels. The Belgian document called for a boycott of the June 10, 2007 Belgian election.
Praise be to the almighty Allah and may the peace of Allah and his Mercy be upon the Messenger Muhammad, his family and his companions and those who ally with them.
In order to be able to answer the urgent question of participating in the British Parliament and voting for candidates who want to participate in Parliament, we must understand the reality, for the Juristic principle states part of Judging a matter is comprehending it or understanding its reality.
Therefore we must understand the reality of two things:
1- The British Parliament who some candidates want to participate in and
2- The election which the people want to be involved in i.e. voting.
We must remember that part of our Imaan and belief in Allah (SWT) is At-Tawheed which means obeying, following, worshipping and elevating Almighty Allah (SWT) exclusively, without associating with him or his attributes anyone else, and that conversely associating with God or with any of his attributes is an act of Shirk which makes a person go outside the fold of Islam and that this is why At-Tawheed is the fundamental pillar of Islam. One of Allah (SWT)’s attributes is that he is the legislator and the commander and he has the absolute right and power to command and legislate, and no one shares this absolute power with him. For Allah (SWT) says:
“Verily the absolute right of legislating is for none but Allah (SWT)” [EMQ 12:40] […]