Muslim staff demand action in US Congress against Islamophobia

Scores of Muslim congressional staff members have condemned US Representative Lauren Boebert’s “Islamophobic and racist comments” about Muslims and Congresswoman Ilhan Omar.

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In an open letter to the US House of Representatives leadership on Wednesday, the group said a “heightened climate of Islamophobia” on Capitol Hill has created “a feeling of anxiety and fear,” according to Al Jazeera website.

They added that “hateful rhetoric by public officials directly impacts us and puts our safety at risk, both at the workplace and in our everyday lives.”

“Witnessing unchecked harassment of one of only three Muslim members of Congress – and the only visibly Muslim member – we feel that our workplace is neither safe nor welcome,” reads the letter, which is signed by 62 Muslim staff members in the House of Representatives and the Senate and 378 allied staff.

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Boebert in a statement last week apologized for her recent “Islamophobic and racist comments” after Omar and other Democrats called for an “appropriate action” against her for “anti-Muslim bigotry.”

But after a few days, Boebert showed no sign of remorse, posting a video that described her call with Omar and doubled down on her rhetoric against Muslims.

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Congresswoman Omar has said Republicans do not have the ability to condemn Islamophobia and anti-Muslim rhetoric because they are “normalizing anti-Muslim bigotry,” in the United States.

The incident and a subsequent video of Boebert making Islamophobic comments about Omar at an event in September caused outrage at Capitol Hill, with Democrats calling for Boebert to be reprimanded, and being stripped of her committee assignments. Republicans, however, have not shown willing to take those steps.

On Tuesday, Omar said, “We need accountability for Rep. Boebert’s hateful, anti-Muslim remarks.”

“This blatant Islamophobia should have no place in the halls of Congress,” she added.

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