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CAIR-PA: 100 Turn Out for ‘USA vs. Al-Arian’ Screening


(PHILADELPHIA, PA, 1/31/07) - Some 100 people turned out yesterday for a screening of the documentary film “USA vs. Al-Arian” co-sponsored by the Philadelphia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-PA) at Gittis Hall in the University of Pennsylvania Law School in Philadelphia.
The film follows the arrest and trial of Sami Al-Arian, an Arab-American university professor accused of supporting a terrorist organization abroad. For two and a half years, Dr. Al-Arian was held in solitary confinement, denied basic privileges and given limited access to his attorneys.
The screening was followed by a panel discussion. Panelists included:
* Laila Al-Arian, Dr. Sami Al-Arian’s daughter and a journalist with The Nation;
* Dr. Larry Davidson, History Professor at West Chester University;
* Justin Peyton, CAIR-PA Civil Rights Director
CAIR, America's largest Muslim civil liberties group, has 35 offices, chapters and affiliates nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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CONTACT: CAIR-PA Civil Rights Director, Justin Peyton, Tel: 215-592-0509, Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

CAIR Releases Results of Muslim Voter Survey


(WASHINGTON, D.C., 1/31/08) - The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today released the results of a national survey indicating that Muslim voters are civically engaged, remain well integrated in American society and are politically active. Although most are still undecided on their pick for the next president, nearly 80 percent said they would vote in the primaries.
The survey, commissioned by the Washington-based Islamic civil rights and advocacy group, asked 1,000 registered Muslim voters about their demographic profiles, political views and levels of social integration. Respondents were randomly drawn from a pool of some 400,000 registered Muslim voters. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus three percent.
The full results of CAIR’s survey may be viewed here.
To highlight these results, CAIR issued an editorial that is available for publication.
The survey’s results show a family-oriented, highly-educated and diverse group of voters who condemn terrorism and believe anti-Americanism in the Muslim world is a serious problem.
The poll also shows that the more devout Muslim voters are also those who are most likely to believe that Islam and modernity are compatible.
Respondents were asked which issues will most influence their vote. Education was the top pick indicated by 89 percent, followed by civil rights (86 percent), health care policy (85 percent) and the economy (85 percent).
“Our survey shows that most Muslim voters are still undecided on their preferred presidential candidate, yet are politically engaged and extremely likely to vote,” said CAIR spokeswoman Amina Rubin. “This means that a potential bloc of Muslim swing voters in several battleground states is ready to support a candidate who will commit to acting on issues that concern America’s Muslims.”
The survey also indicated that many Muslim voters are concentrated in 10 states: California, 19 percent; New York, 13 percent; Illinois, 10 percent; Texas, 9 percent; Virginia, 7 percent; Michigan, 6 percent; Florida, 6 percent; Maryland, 5 percent; Pennsylvania, 4 percent; and Ohio, 3 percent.
CAIR, America's largest Islamic civil liberties group, has 35 offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

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CONTACT: CAIR Media Relations Director Ahmed Rehab, 202-870-0166, E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

CAIR Asks Judge to Throw Out Radio Host’s ‘Baseless’ Lawsuit


(WASHINGTON, D.C., 1/30/08) - The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today asked a federal judge in California to throw out what it termed a “baseless” lawsuit by syndicated radio talk show host Michael Savage.
Late last year, Savage sued CAIR for copyright infringement after the Washington-based civil rights and advocacy organization posted brief audio clips from his October 29, 2007, program on its website.
In those clips, Savage, whose “The Savage Nation” program airs on more than 300 radio stations nationwide, screamed attacks on Muslims, Islam and the Quran. CAIR called on radio listeners of all faiths to contact companies that advertise on Savage's program to express their concerns about the host's anti-Muslim bigotry.
A community and interfaith coalition, called Hate Hurts America, was also formed in response to Savage’s rhetorical attacks on Muslims and Islam.
SEE: Hate Hurts America
CAIR filed an answer to Savage’s suit as well as a motion for judgment on the pleadings in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. A hearing is set for March 7, 2008 in that court.
In its motion, CAIR stated, in part:
“Viewed in its entirety, Savage’s Complaint is simply a camouflaged defamation or disparagement claim dressed as bogus copyright and RICO claims. . .Savage’s legal broadside specifically targets CAIR as a civil rights organization and its core political speech responding to and criticizing Savage’s inflammatory political rhetoric. As the nation’s largest civil rights organization for Muslims, CAIR appropriately characterized Savage’s own words as an ‘Anti-Muslim Tirade’ and publicly communicated a detailed response as part of its advocacy work.”
SEE: CAIR's Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings
“Michael Savage’s frivolous and baseless lawsuit is a direct attack on First Amendment freedoms and on any citizen’s right to comment on public issues,” said CAIR legal counsel Nadhira Al-Khalili. “His suit is an abuse of the judicial system and a transparent attempt to punish those who challenge his hate-filled rhetoric.”
She added that CAIR’s public criticism of Savage’s remarks is clearly protected by both the First Amendment and copyright law.
CAIR is represented in this case by the law firms Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, and the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF).
CAIR, America's largest Islamic civil liberties group, has 35 offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

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CONTACT: CAIR Media Relations Director Ahmed Rehab, 202-870-0166, E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Poll Shows Muslim Voters Undecided About White House Pick


ISLAM-OPED: POLL SHOWS MUSLIM VOTERS UNDECIDED ABOUT WHITE HOUSE PICK
ISLAM-OPED is a syndication service of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) designed to offer an American Muslim perspective on current political, social and religious issues.
ISLAM-OPED commentaries are offered free-of-charge to one media outlet in each market area. Permission for publication will be granted on a first-come-first-served basis.
Please consider the following commentary for publication.
CONTACT: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
TEL: Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787
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Poll Shows Muslim Voters Undecided About White House Pick
By Ibrahim Hooper
Word Count: 595
[Ibrahim Hooper is strategic communications director for the Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation's largest Muslim civil liberties group. He may be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and a photo is available here.]
Many religious or ethnic minority groups are considered to be in one political camp or the other. But a recent survey of American Muslim voters shows they are largely undecided about their choice for president in the November elections.
SEE: American Muslim Voters and the 2008 Election
The results of that national survey, commissioned by the Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), also show a family-oriented, highly-educated and diverse group of voters who condemn terrorism and believe anti-Americanism in the Muslim world is a serious problem.
When contacted late last year by an independent polling firm, a random sample of 1,000 Muslim voters said they are:
* Young: More than three-fourths (78 percent) of respondents said they are between the ages of 30 and 54.
* Highly Educated: A majority (65 percent) said they have a bachelor's degree or higher.
* Middle Class: Almost half of respondents (43 percent) said they have a household income of $50,000 or higher.
* Family Oriented: More than three-fourths of (77 percent) said they are married.
* Religiously Diverse: More than half (52 percent) of respondents said they attend a mosque at least once a month, but than one-fifth
(21 percent) said they seldom or never attend a mosque. While 46 percent of the respondents said they consider themselves "Sunni," 38 percent said they view themselves as "just Muslims." Ten percent said they are "Shia," while two percent said they are "Sufi," a more mystical interpretation of the faith.
* Involved in Civic Life: The vast majority of Muslim respondents (87 percent) said they regularly go to the polls on Election Day and almost half (45 percent) said they volunteer for an institution serving the public.
*Democratic or Independent: Forty-nine percent of respondents said they consider themselves Democrats and 36 percent said they are politically independent. Only 8 percent of respondents said they are Republicans. When asked about their preferred presidential candidate, almost half of respondents (45 percent) said they "don't know or haven't decided."
When asked their views on a number of domestic and international issues, the vast majority of Muslim respondents (86 percent) said attacks on civilians are "never justified." Those who said they were "often justified" (2 percent) were less that the statistical margin of error (3 percent) for the survey.
On international issues, American Muslim voters also said:
* American Muslim leaders should support peace and reconciliation between the warring factions in Iraq. (80 percent)
* Anti-Americanism in the Muslim world is a serious problem and anti-Muslim prejudice is a threat to American Muslims. (76 percent)
* Brokering a just resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict would improve America's reputation in the Muslim world. (75 percent)
* Simulated drowning (water-boarding) is an unacceptable interrogation method for terror suspects. (74 percent)
When asked which issues will have the most influence on their voting decision, education was the top pick (89 percent) followed by civil rights (86 percent), health care policy (85 percent) and the economy (85 percent).
These results defy stereotypes of American Muslims as a monolithic group. One interesting finding of the survey shows that the most devout Muslim voters are also those who are more likely to believe that Islam and modernity are compatible.
Almost 80 percent of the Muslim voters polled said they would vote in this year's presidential primaries. With the prospect of close elections nationwide, no candidate can afford to ignore this potential bloc of swing voters.
The results of CAIR's survey should give a heads-up to candidates of any political party that there is a group of voters willing to listen to all those who address their concerns.

 

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