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CAIR Says Trump’s Islamophobic ‘Prayer Rug’ Tweet Designed to Distract from Latest Legal Problems

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 1/18/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today called President Trump’s Islamophobic “prayer rug” tweet a “pathetic” attempt to distract from his latest legal and political problems.

This morning, Trump tweeted: “Border rancher: “We’ve found prayer rugs out here. It’s unreal.”  Washington Examiner   People coming across the Southern Border from many countries, some of which would be a big surprise.”

The tweet references an unfounded and anonymous claim in the Washington Examiner that “prayer rugs” were found at the border. The unnamed “source” admitted that she had never actually seen any “Middle Easterners” herself.

SEE: Trump Promotes Unfounded Claim That Islamic Prayer Rugs Are Littering The Border

Trump’s Prayer-Rug Paranoia

“It is pathetic that Mr. Trump always returns to his longstanding anti-immigrant and Islamophobic themes when seeking to distract the nation from his growing legal and political problems,” said CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw. “This is the same tactic we’ve seen him use time and time again to divert attention away from real issues to manufactured conspiracies. Millions of American Muslims use prayer rugs, and neither the rugs nor their owners should be falsely linked to terrorism for political purposes.”

McCaw said CAIR has reported 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.

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



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