Ilhan Omar Could Be the First Somali-American in Congress After Snagging Democratic Primary
Two more Somali-Americans also make history by winning seats in Minnesota's State House.
Ilhan Omar, the first Somali-American who has served as a state legislator for Minnesota's District 60B, has won the Democratic nomination for her state's 5th Congressional District, The Washington Postreports.
Omar locked in this victory by running a progressive campaign, despite attempts of alt-right sabotage, with the support of multiple left-wing groups and an endorsement of rising politician Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. She defeated two candidates who argued that her rise happened too quickly, and is the favorite to join the House this November.
This is another history making moment, as she, along with Michigan's Rashida Tlaib, could be the first Muslim women in Congress, with Omar potentially being the first to replace another Muslim—Keith Ellison—in the House.
"We started this campaign to prove people are ready and willing to fight for an America that works for all of us," Omar says, thanking her staff, volunteers, donors and voters, in a tweet. "Together, we will move our district, state and nation forward."
Omar will now run against Republican nominee Jennifer Zielinski in the general election.
Somali-Americans still continue to gain footing in Minnesota state politics, according to Star Tribune reporterMukhtar Ibrahim. Hodan Hassan won the Democratic primary for Minneapolis House District 62A, making her the second Somali-American woman elected to state legislature. Mohamud Noor won the race for Omar's seat in Minnesota legislature—making him the first Somali-American man to be elected to a state house.