Friday, November 16, 2018


I approve of this:
Democrats want to change a rule banning House members from wearing hats on the chamber floor to accommodate the first Muslim women to ever be elected to Congress — one of whom wears a headscarf.

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Rules Committee ranking Democrat Rep. Jim McGovern (Mass.) and congresswoman-elect Ilhan Omar of Minnesota are the co-authors of the proposal, which was included as part of a slate of rule changes that Democrats will seek to implement once they assume control of the House next year.

Omar, who was born in Somalia but came to the United States as a refu­gee, wears a headscarf.... Democrats are proposing changing the rule to allow all religious headwear into the House chamber, though it is unclear whether members of other faiths would take advantage of it.
I don't think this rule change will affect any other House members right now, but it might in the future. And not just Muslims -- the attorney general of the state New Jersey is Gurbir Grewal, a Sikh who wears a turban. Why should any Sikhs who win House seats in the future be compelled not to wear turbans?

But here's a prediction: Democrats will change the rule -- and Republicans will immediately change it back whenever they regain control of the House. They'll do this even if Omar remains in the House, or if other wearers of religious head coverings are House members.

There are Sikh Republicans -- Harmeet Dhillon, a lawyers who's also an official with the California Republican Party, opened the second night of the 2016 Republican convention with a Sikh prayer. And Pew says that 13% of U.S. Muslims are Republican or lean Republican.

But I predict that Republicans will reverse this rule anyway, the first chance they get. Let's hope that doesn't happen for a long time.

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