CAIR Open Letter to Muslims on the November 2 Elections

Assalamu alaikum,

In light of Tuesday’s election results and the months of preparation that preceded the general election, we would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the Muslim community on its success. American Muslims have a lot to celebrate. You proved yet again by your record turnout at the polls that Muslims are an important part of our society’s rich religious and ethnic heritage.

We extend our sincerest thanks to each and every American Muslim who worked hard to mobilize and empower the community. American Muslims obtained state voter lists, with particular emphasis on Florida and Ohio, and organized volunteers in “get out the vote” efforts nationwide. These volunteers also contacted tens of thousands of voters, asking for their pledge to go to the polls on November 2nd. CAIR, along with the indispensable assistance of individual Muslim activists, responded to the need for more proactive initiatives in the 2004 elections…

All of this is an indication of an ongoing process of political maturation.

As we look forward, we should reflect on lessons learned. In order to sustain and advance on the successes of this year’s mobilization efforts, there are a few steps American Muslims can begin to take today to further empower our community in the years to come. Among the necessary steps, a few are to:

* Train our community to become more politically active, specifically in the areas of voter registration, get out the vote efforts and election officer certification.

* Issue a report that will analyze the voting trends of Americans and American Muslims and determine strategies to maximize the power of our vote.

* Build coalitions with groups that share common ground on issues of importance to the Muslim community.

* Compile an exhaustive list of registered voters nationwide and other data on our community to take advantage of demographic strengths.

* Use the example of other Muslims who have run for public office, and become more active at the local level, advocating our issues in district, city and regional elections.

Be sure to keep informed by visiting our website: Rest assured that CAIR will, insha’Allah, continue its mission of enhancing understanding of Islam, encouraging dialogue, protecting civil liberties, empowering American Muslims, and building coalitions in support of justice and mutual understanding.

We remain devoted to the cause of advocating for the American Muslim community’s issues in the corridors of power--regardless of which political party holds a majority.

We are dedicated to reaching out to the re-elected President and his administration, advancing the twin causes of pluralism and diversity in American society.

The values we uphold know neither party affiliation nor sectarian creed. Their universality is what inspires us to continue our crucial work. We ask that you help us in that regard by implementing the above steps and by continuing to reach out to others in an attempt to make the next four years a propitious time in the history of American Muslims.

Congratulations on a job well done. We look forward to improving on our past successes in the months and years to come.



Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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