The Unofficial List of Wins and Losses for American Muslim Candidates in the 2018 Elections

Key Highlights (As of 11/7/18 9:00pm EST)

  • 100 American Muslims filed as candidates for the 2018 elections
  • 50 made it to the primary
  • 56 Total candidates identified
  • 37 American Muslims won their races, 7 had been up for re-election
  • 9 races are waiting results or official confirmation
  • 10 losses
  • Won in 15 states across the country

Notable Achievements

  • 1st Muslim woman elected to Congress: Rashida Tlaib
  • 2nd Muslim woman, 1st Hijabi elected to Congress, Ilhan Omar
  • 2 Refugees elected: Ilhan Omar, Safiya Wazir
  • 1st Muslim and 1st African American State Representative from Staten Island (NY): Charles Fall
  • 1st South Asian elected to Passaic City Council, NJ: Salim Patel
  • 1st Muslim legislator in New Mexico: Abbas Akhil
  • 1st Muslim women elected in Orange County, CA; 1st South Asian Women elected to Irvine City Council: Farrah Khan
  • 1st Immigrant and 1st Muslim elected to Georgia Legislature: Sheikh Rahman

The whole world seems to be holding it’s breath while keenly watching the results of the 2018 U.S. mid-term elections. While many people are focusing on the control of Congress and big races, there are a lot of significant changes happening in lesser known races. One of those changes happens to be the significant number of Muslims that decided to run for office in spite of a climate of Islamophobia and anti-Muslim sentiment becoming commonplace in partisan politics.

Even before the general election, these races caught national media attention:

  • The blue Muslim wave: American Muslims launch political campaigns, hope to deliver ‘sweet justice’ to Trump” (The Washington Post, April 15, 2018)
  • Muslim candidates running in record numbers face backlash” (The Star Tribune, July 15, 2018)
  • Record number of Muslim Americans make bids for elected office” (The Christian Science Monitor, July 16, 2018)
  • Muslims run for office in record numbers but the path is uphill” (The Seattle Times, July 16, 2018)
  • “Muslim Americans Running For Office In Highest Numbers Since 2001” (NPR, July 18, 2018)

Given the rise in mass shootings, hate crimes, and anti-Muslim sentiment, the list of Muslims running for office was never publicly disclosed for security reasons. However, most news outlets reported about 80–100 Muslims had filed as candidates at the start of the election season with about 50 remaining through the primary season.

Unfortunately, there hasn’t been much media coverage about how many of these Muslim candidates won. Last night, I spent a few hours doing last second research, compiling a list of various Muslims running for office. I searched Google, twitter, and had the help of various friends, family, and civic groups who all shared information by word of mouth through WhatsApp and Facebook. The following list is an unofficial list of the results of various races involving American Muslims.

Please review and let me know if there is anything that needs to be added, removed, or edited. I’ve tried my best to confirm results through media or official candidate results but that was not always possible. Huge shout out to Shahed Amanullah and the fellows of the American Muslim Civic Leadership Institute for helping to compile this list.


Confirmed Wins (Organized by State)

Summary of State Wins

  1. NJ (9)
  2. CA (7)
  3. NY (3)
  4. VA (3)
  5. MI (2)
  6. MN (2)
  7. NC (2)
  8. GA (1)
  9. IL (1)
  10. IN (1)
  11. MD (1)
  12. NH (1)
  13. NM (1)
  14. TN (1)
  15. TX (1)

State Wins — Detailed Breakdown

California (7)

Georgia (1)

Illinois (1)

  • Sadia Covert: Dupage County Board, 5th district (IL) (Source: Daily Herald)

Indiana (1)

  • Andre Carson: U.S. Representative, 7th District (IN) (Source: WRTV)

Maryland (1)

Michigan (2)

  • Rashida Tlaib: 1st Muslimah in Congress (MI) (Source: Vox Media)
  • Abdullah Hammoud: Re-elected House of Representatives, District 15 (MI) (Source: MoveOn Twitter)

Minnesota (2)

  • Ilhan Omar: 1st Hijabi, 2nd Muslimah, 1st Somali-American in Congress, (MN) (Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune)
  • Keith Ellison: 1st American Muslim Attorney General (MN ) (Source: Star Tribune)

New Hampshire (1)

  • Safiya Wazir: Former refugee from Afghanistan, State Rep (NH) (Source: Think Progress)

New Jersey (9)

New Mexico (1)

New York (3)

  • Charles Fall: State Assembly, North Shore Assembly Seat, Staten Island (- Fall will become the first Muslim and the first African American to serve as a Staten Island representative in Albany. (NY) (Source: Staten Island Live)
  • Robert Jackson: 1st Muslim in NY State Legislature, State Senate District 31 (NY) (Source: Patch)
  • Shahabuddeen Ally: NYC Civil Court, New York County (NY) (Source: Ballotpedia)

North Carolina (2)

Tennessee (1)

  • Yusuf Hakeem: House District 28 (TN)(Source: Ballotpedia)

Texas (1)

Virginia (3)

Re-Elected Wins (7)

  1. Assad Akhter*: Reelected Passaic County Freeholder (NJ) (Source: North Jersey)
  2. Abdullah Hammoud*: Re-elected House of Representatives, District 15 (MI) (Source: MoveOn Twitter)
  3. Andre Carson*: U.S. Representative, 7th District (IN) (Source: WRTV)
  4. Mohamed T Khairullah*: Mayor of Prospect Park (NJ) (Source: Mohamed Khairullah Facebook)
  5. Halim Dhanidina*: Associate Justice, Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Three (CA) (Source: LA Progressive)
  6. Maimona Afzal Berta*: Franklin McKinley Board of Education — Short Term (CA) (Source: Ballotpedia)
  7. Mussab Ali*: Jersey City Board of Education (NJ) (Source: NJ.com)

All Confirmed Wins (Organized By Time of Report)

  1. Rashida Tlaib: 1st Muslimah in Congress (MI) (Source: Vox Media)
  2. Ilhan Omar: 1st Hijabi, 2nd Muslimah, 1st Somali-American in Congress, (MN) (Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune)
  3. Assad Akhter*: Reelected Passaic County Freeholder (NJ) (Source: North Jersey)
  4. Salim Patel: 1st South Asian on Passaic City Council (NJ) (Source: Insider NJ)
  5. Haseeb Javed: Manassas Park City Council (VA) (Source: Prince William Times)
  6. Babur Lateef: Special Election for School Board (VA) (Source: Inside NOVA)
  7. Safiya Wazir: Former refugee from Afghanistan, State Rep (NH) (Source: Think Progress)
  8. Rabeea Collier: District Judge , 113th Judicial District (TX) (Source: Rabbea Collier Facebook)
  9. Mo Seifeldein: Alexandria City Council (VA) (Source: Alexandria Living)
  10. Keith Ellison: 1st American Muslim Attorney General (MN ) (Source: Star Tribune)
  11. Charles Fall: State Assembly, North Shore Assembly Seat, Staten Island (- Fall will become the first Muslim and the first African American to serve as a Staten Island representative in Albany. (NY) (Source: Staten Island Live)
  12. Robert Jackson: 1st Muslim in NY State Legislature, State Senate District 31 (NY) (Source: Patch)
  13. Abdullah Hammoud*: Re-elected House of Representatives, District 15 (MI) (Source: MoveOn Twitter)
  14. Mujtaba Mohammed: State Senate, District 38 (NC) (Source: Run for Something Twitter)
  15. Andre Carson*: U.S. Representative, 7th District (IN) (Source: WRTV)
  16. Mohamed T Khairullah*: Mayor of Prospect Park (NJ) (Source: Mohamed Khairullah Facebook)
  17. Sadia Covert: Dupage County Board, 5th district (IL) (Source: Daily Herald)
  18. Sabina Zafar: San Ramon City Council (CA) (Source: East Bay Times)
  19. Aisha Wahab: Hayward City Council (CA) (Source: The Mercury News)
  20. Ahmed Zahra: Fullerton City Council, District 5 (CA)(Source: The OC Register)
  21. Farrah Khan: Irvine City Council (CA) (Source: The OC Register)
  22. Ali Taj: Artesia City Council(CA)(Source: The Los Angeles Times)
  23. Nasif Majeed: State House, District 99 (NC) (Source: Charlotte Observer)
  24. Abbas Akhil: State Rep, District 20 (NM) (Source: Planned Parenthood Twitter)
  25. Sabina Taj: Howard County, Board of Education (MD) (Source: The Baltimore Sun)
  26. Alaa Abdelaziz: Councilman, Paterson 6th Ward (NJ) (Source: Tap Into Paterson)
  27. Alaa Matari: Borough Councilman, Prospect Park (NJ)(Source: NJ.com)
  28. Sheikh Rahman: State Senate, District 5 (GA)(Source: Northwest Georgia News)
  29. Yusuf Hakeem: House District 28 (TN)(Source: Ballotpedia)
  30. Halim Dhanidina*: Associate Justice, Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Three (CA) (Source: LA Progressive)
  31. Shahabuddeen Ally: NYC Civil Court, New York County (NY) (Source: Ballotpedia)
  32. Hazim Yassin: Borough Councilman, Red Bank (NJ) (Source: Two River Times)
  33. Maimona Afzal Berta*: Franklin McKinley Board of Education — Short Term (CA) (Source: Ballotpedia)
  34. Adam Chaabane: Woodland Park Board of Education (NJ) (Source: www.passaiccountynj.org)
  35. Mohammad M. Ramadan: Haledon Board of Eduction (NJ) (Source: www.passaiccountynj.org)
  36. Mussab Ali*: Jersey City Board of Education (NJ) (Source: NJ.com)
  37. Sabina Zafar: San Ramon City Council (CA)(Source: Sabina Zafar Instagram)

Awaiting Results or Official Confirmation

  1. Ali Saleh: (City of Bell) (CA)
  2. Javed Ellahie: Monte Sereno City Council (CA)
  3. Aamina Ahmed: Plymouth-Canton School Board (MI)
  4. Mariam F. Khan: Dennis Township Board of Education (NJ)
  5. Al Jabbar: Anaheim Union High School District Trustee Area 1 (CA)
  6. Cheryl Sudduth, District Director (CA)
  7. Sam Beydoun: Wayne County Commissioner (MI)
  8. Angela Jaffer: Northville School Board (MI)
  9. Jihan Aiyash: School Board, Hamtramck 1st Muslim women to serve on the board (MI)

Losses

  1. Omar Qudrat: US 52nd District (CA) (Source: Times of San Diego)
  2. Aisha Yaqoob: House District 97 (GA) (Source: Ballotpedia)
  3. *Made Anonymous by request of candidate*
  4. Omar Kadir: Williamson County Treasurer (TX) (Source: The Statesman)
  5. Abdelnasser Rashid: Cook County Commissioner, 17th District (IL) (Source: Abdelnasser Rashid Facebook)
  6. Zahra Roach: Franklin County Commissioner (WA) (Source: Tri-City Herald)
  7. Zahra Suratwala: DuPage County Board, District 1 (IL) (Source: Daily Herald)
  8. Bill Essayli: State Assembly, District 60 (Source: The Press Enterprise)
  9. Fauzia Siddiqui Rizvi: Corona City Council, District 4 (CA)
  10. Syed S. Ali: House of Representatives, District 131 (TX) (Source: Ballotpedia)

Special Thanks
A special thanks to the following people who helped contribute to the compilation of this list:

  • Alex
  • Shahed Amanullah
  • Zahra Billoo
  • Faisal Buharie
  • Samar Kaukab
  • Muqtedar Khan
  • Jenan Mohajir
  • Sabina Mohamed
  • Marium Mohiuddin
  • Mir
  • Rabeah
  • Suroor Razi
  • Asim Rehman
  • Zaynab Salman
  • Dilara Alim Sayeed
  • Sobia Sheikh
  • Sumaiya Ahmed Sheikh
  • Sadia Tirmizi
  • Zainab Wasti
  • Roohi Y