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CAIR Condemns Anti-Muslim Rant by GOP Witness at Congressional Hearing on Hate Crimes and White Nationalism

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 4/9/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today condemned an anti-Muslim tirade by a GOP witness at today’s House Judiciary Committee hearing on “Hate Crimes and the Rise of White Nationalism.”

At that hearing, Zionist Organization of America President Morton Klein falsely identified the New Zealand mosque attacker as “left wing,” downplayed the threat of white supremacists and smeared American Muslims and Islam as the main source of anti-Semitism. He also attacked Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and the BDS movement. Klein falsely claimed that “one third” of American Muslims are anti-Semitic. His bigoted remarks drew jeers from hearing attendees.

[NOTE: BDS refers to Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions in support of Palestinian human rights.]

Video: Anti-Muslim Rant by GOP Witness Morton Klein at Congressional Hearing on Hate Crimes and White Nationalism

“Instead of speaking against bigotry and white supremacy, Mr. Klein instead chose to go on an Islamophobic rant that demonstrated the unfortunate mainstreaming of anti-Muslim hate we have seen in our nation since the rise of Donald Trump,” said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. “It is shameful that the GOP chose to invite a witness with a long history of anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bigotry.”

Awad noted that Klein is notorious for his use of the term “filthy Arab,” his support for the Trump administration’s Muslim Ban and his advocacy of the religious profiling of Muslims.

SEE: ZOA’s Mort Klein Tweets ”˜Filthy Arab’ Slur ”” And Doubles Down

ZOA’s Morton Klein Backs Trump’s Call for Profiling Muslims

CAIR submitted a written statement for the hearing’s record that stated in part:

“CAIR urges the House Judiciary Committee and all the U.S. government to confront and admit the reality that we as a nation are in the middle of an epidemic of white nationalist and Islamophobic attacks targeting minority religious communities.”

SEE: CAIR Statement for the Record on the U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary Hearing on ”˜Hate Crimes and the Rise of White Nationalism’

The hearing to examine “hate crimes, the impact white nationalist groups have on American communities and the spread of white identity ideology” included testimony by Dr. Mohammad Abu-Salha, the father Yusor and Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha who were killed in a 2015 shooting that many believe was motivated by anti-Muslim bias.

Video: Muslim Hate Crimes Victims’ Father Describes Daughters’ Execution-Style Killing

Candace Owens, another GOP witness who testified at today’s hearing “has said that Hitler would have been ”˜fine’ if he stayed in Germany, and suggested that because Hitler wanted Germany to have control of the whole world, that made him a globalist, and not a nationalist. Owens later walked back her comments somewhat in an interview on Fox Business.” (The Forward)

SEE: Candace Owen Will Testify Before Congress on Hate Crimes, White Nationalism

CAIR has witnessed an unprecedented spike in bigotry targeting American Muslims, immigrants and members of other minority groups since the election of Donald Trump as president. CAIR has repeatedly expressed concern about Islamophobic, white supremacist and racist Trump administration policies and appointments.

Recent hate incidents include bomb and death threats targeting Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), a threat targeting a Maryland mosque, an arson attack on a California mosque, recent arrests in an alleged bomb plot targeting Muslims in New York, guilty pleas in the bombing of a Minnesota mosque, and sentencing of men in a plot to bomb Muslims in Kansas.

CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.


CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448,; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726,


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