Joe Biden urged Americans of Muslim descent to support him against President Donald Trump while addressing the “Million Muslim Votes” summit Monday. The event was hosted by Emgage, a progressive group even Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama avoided during their campaigns.
Emgage has committed to turning out a million Muslim voters for Biden in the battleground states of Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin in November.
In a series of disconnected attacks on Trump, Biden accused the president of “fanning flames of hate across the board” and supporting an “unconscionable rise of Islamicphobia.”
He added that Trump has engaged in four years of attacks on minorities.
“Muslim communities were the first to feel Donald Trump’s assault on Black and brown communities in this country with his vile Muslim ban,” Biden claimed.
If elected, Biden vowed to rescind the so-called ban “on Day One” and include Muslim voices in his administration.
“I wish we taught more in our schools about the Islamic faith. I wish we talked about all the great confessional faiths,” Biden said during a rambling 12-minute diatribe. “Muslim American voices matter to our communities, to our country.”
He also spoke of recently-deceased John Lewis and being on “the right side of history” as well as “ending racial profiling” and “tripling funding for schools.”
“I want to work in partnership with you, make sure your voices are included in the decision-making process as we work to rebuild our nation,” Biden said.
Biden also promised to “continue to champion the rights of Palestinians and Israelis to have a state of their own” and concluded his comments with quote from the Prophet Muhammad. The candidate did not take questions.
Several prominent Muslim elected officials endorsed Biden for president in a letter earlier in the day, including Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar and Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison. Omar served as a surrogate for Bernie Sanders during the socialist’s second failed presidential bid.
The pro-Biden letter decried a number of Trump’s policies, including his pullout from the Iran nuclear deal.
New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib — two far left “Squad” members and former backers of Sanders — did not sign the Emgage Action-organized letter.
Emgage bills itself as the “American Muslim community’s first issue advocacy organization that seeks to mobilize American Muslims to advocate for legislation and policies that define what we stand for.” They focus on Civil Liberties, Income Inequality, Healthcare, Immigration Reform, National Security and Climate Change and assorted progressive projects.