UPDATE: Tell Senate to Vote No on Islamophobic Judicial Nominee Steven Menashi Who Argues for ‘Ethnonationalism’ Ahead of Impending Vote

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 11/13/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today renewed its call on all Americans to contact their senators and demand that they vote against Steven Menashi’s nomination to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit because of his support for “ethnonationalism” and for repeating a widely-debunked anti-Muslim conspiracy theory.


Formally nominated in September by President Donald Trump, the Senate voted today to end debate on Menashi’s nomination meaning that a vote will likely take place in coming days.

SEE: White House Lawyer Menashi’s Second Circuit Nomination Advances

Menashi has argued that “Ethnic ties provide the groundwork for social trust and political solidarity… Social scientists have found that greater ethnic heterogeneity is associate with lower social trust… Ethnically heterogenous societies exhibit less political and civic engagement, less effective governing institutions, and fewer public goods… Surely, it does not serve the cause of liberal democracy to ignore this reality.”

Menashi also repeated the Islamophobic online myth, favored by President Trump, about U.S. Gen. John Pershing executing Muslim prisoners in the Philippines with bullets dipped in “pigs’ blood.” He has also mocked protests against campus rape, denounced LGBTQ rights, and defended a fraternity that threw a racially insensitive party. 

SEE: The controversy over “ethnonationalism” and a Trump judicial nominee, explained

Video: Trump Judicial Nominee Steven Menashi Argues for Racial Purity, Promotes Islamophobic Hoax

“The United States Senate should not support a lifetime appointment to anyone with connections to Islamophobia and ethnonationalism,” said CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw. “Because the Supreme Court reviews less than 2 percent of the cases it receives, the courts of appeals, which are one step below the Supreme Court, have enormous power and influence and it is essential that someone with bigoted views not be given such power.”

In August, CAIR demanded President Trump withdraw Menashi’s nomination.

SEE: CAIR Demands Trump Withdraw Judicial Nominee Steven Menashi Who Argues for ‘Ethnonationalism,’ Promotes Islamophobic Hoax

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.

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, rmccaw@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Coordinator Ayan Ajeen, 202-774-0770, aajeen@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

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