FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 23, 2015
MINNEAPOLIS, MN – It gets cold. But we do have indoor heating and plumbing here in Minnesota. And Ilhan Omar, candidate for Minnesota House District 60-B, would like to extend an invitation to GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee to come visit, see these things for himself, and learn about the Somali community in Minnesota.
“... if you think about it, we would be bringing people in who lived in the desert their entire lives, and they would be completely disrupted, not only in terms of their culture, their language, their religion, my gosh even in terms of their climate,” Huckabee said. “Can you imagine bringing in a bunch of Syrian refugees who’ve lived in the desert their whole lives that are suddenly thrown into an English speaking community? Where it’s maybe in Minnesota where it is 20 degrees below zero? I mean just I don’t understand what we possibly can be thinking.”
It’s no surprise that we’ve seen xenophobic outbursts from many of our country’s leaders. But what about that inscription on the Statue of Liberty: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses, yearning to breath free…”?
Our Syrian brothers and sisters seek refuge and Minnesota welcomes them. Gov. Dayton and Sen. Franken and Klobuchar hold strong positions in favor of increasing refugee resettlement. In fact, Minnesota has consistently accepted more than 2,000 refugees each year.
Ilhan Omar is one of them. Her father brought their family to Minnesota 18 years ago to build a new life in a welcoming community.
“I invite Governor Huckabee to Minnesota, home to the largest Somali community in America, to meet my family and other families who have found a home here. We are doctors, teachers, poets, business owners, and factory workers. Despite the cold, we experienced the warmth of welcoming neighbors. We raise children here and future leaders. I hope you, and any other doubters, will accept this is your invitation to see Americans at their finest. Minnesota welcomes you... And refugees too.”