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Squad member Tlaib urges Michigan residents to vote ‘uncommitted’ in Democratic primary, snubbing Biden

Rep. Rashida Tlaib, called on Dearborn, Michigan, voters to vote "uncommitted" in the Democratic primary, n support of Palestinians in Gaza.

Squad member Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., encouraged residents in her district to vote “uncommitted” – instead of for President Biden – in the upcoming Democratic primary.  

In a video shared by the Listen to Michigan campaign, Tlaib stood outside the Ford Civic Center in the city of Dearborn, reminding residents that early voting would be open until Saturday. 

“It is important as you all know to not only march against the genocide, not only make sure that we’re calling our members of Congress and local electeds and passing city resolutions all throughout our country – it is also important to create a voting block, something that is a bullhorn to say enough is enough. We don’t want a country that supports wars, and bombs and destruction, we want to support life,” Tlaib said. “We want to stand up for every single life killed in Gaza.”


“I want you to think of all of the amazing young children and the people, again, lives were lost in Gaza. This is the way you can raise our voices. Don’t make us even more invisible. Right now, we feel completely neglected and just unseen by our government. If you want us to be louder, then come here and vote uncommitted,” she said. 

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Tlaib, the only Palestinian serving in Congress, was censured by the House in November over her use of the phrase, “from the river to the sea,” an antisemitic slogan calling for the erasure of Israel. 

Nonetheless, Tlaib has raised nearly $3.7 million since the start of the war in Gaza as of earlier this month, record fundraising for the third-term congresswoman who has faced attacks from both sides of the aisle for her criticism of Israel, according to the Associated Press. 

Dearborn was dubbed “America’s Jihad Capital” by an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal earlier this month, with the piece describing protesters, many with kaffiyehs covering their faces, shouting “Intifada, intifada,” “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free,” and “America is a terrorist state,” as well as local imams delivering antisemitic sermons in the Detroit suburb.

Democratic Mayor Abdullah Hammoud claimed the WSJ opinion piece “led to an alarming increase in bigoted and Islamophobic rhetoric online targeting the city of Dearborn.”

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“Stay vigilant,” he wrote on X. “Effective immediately – Dearborn police will ramp up its presence across all places of worship and major infrastructure points.” 

In late January, Hammoud told CNN he felt it was “dehumanizing” of Biden to send a delegation of campaign staff to meet with Arab-American and Muslim leadership in Dearborn, arguing that the president should be sending “policymakers” instead amid the war in Gaza. 

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Biden himself came to Michigan in February, though the focus of the trip was to meet with autoworkers and Black community leaders. He was endorsed by the United Auto Workers.

Biden won Michigan by just three percentage points in 2020 and the state is considered a battleground again in 2024. Tlaib’s call to vote “uncommitted” was viewed as a challenge to the president accede to the demands of progressives on Palestine or lose support from that faction of the Democratic Party come November. 

The Michigan Democratic primary is Feb. 27. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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