Democratic Candidate Attempting to make U.S. History
At a time when the U.S. is grappling with the issue of Muslims, son of Egyptian Muslim immigrants Dr. Abdul El-Sayed is all set to run for the post of Governor of Michigan state. Having served as the executive director of the Detroit Health Department, he shifted to politics. Despite the discrimination against Muslims in the United States, his election manager thinks he has a fairly strong chance of winning. “The electorate [in Michigan] doesn’t know what it wants, but it wants something different,” says El-Sayed’s manager, Max Gloss.
Still, the issue of El-Sayed’s religion is prominent on his mind. After his stump speech at Adrian, Michigan, El-Sayed was asked whether he was planning to introduce the sharia law to the U.S. if he would succeed in becoming the first Muslim governor of the US. Replying that he would obviously not, he also added that he strictly believed in the separation of Church and State, indicating that he had no interest in mixing his religion with his political work.
“If I am going to want to be able to put my face on the ground 34 times a day like I do because I’m Muslim, I want to make sure no one can take that right away from me. And I will not take that right away from anyone else,” he said, adding that he had every right to practice whatever religion he wanted in his home because that is the freedom for which the U.S. Constitution stands for. He also insisted that it is the separation of Church and State that allowed people to have the freedom to practice whatever religion they wanted to.
As to how he will be received as the first Muslim governor in American history, he pointed out at the election of John F. Kennedy’s as president – which was a remarkable point in American history because he was the first Catholic to become president – that too in a country that has had a troubled history with Catholics.
If elected, El-Sayed promises to increase the minimum wage to $15 and to legalize marijuana, suggesting a very bold and modern mentality. He has also refused to accept any contributions from large corporations, indicating that he would prefer to remain free from the control of any vested interests.