Tuesday, 20 August 2019

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C CAIR-FL In The News

Update: Hallandale official may be reprimanded for anti-Muslim rant

By Susannah BryanContact Reporter, For South Florida Sun Sentinel, On 17 January 2019, Read Original
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Hallandale Beach Commissioner Anabelle Lima-Taub posted a comment on Facebook suggesting Muslim Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib might "blow up" Capitol Hill.

An elected official from Hallandale Beach who accused a newly elected Muslim congresswoman of being an anti-Semite who might “blow up Capitol Hill” could face censure from her commission colleagues.

Commissioner Anabelle Lima-Taub has come under fierce attack in recent days for comments she made on Facebook after Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., was sworn into office on Jan. 3. Tlaib was sworn in, only to hours later vow to help fellow Democrats go after President Donald Trump and “impeach the mother------.”

Five days later, Lima-Taub signed an online petition seeking to remove Tlaib from office and posted the petition on her personal Facebook page.

“Proudly signed,” Lima-Taub wrote. “A Hamas-loving anti-Semite has NO place in government! She is a danger and [I] would not put it past her to become a martyr and blow up Capitol Hill.”

Hallandale commissioner: Muslim congresswoman might 'blow up' Capitol Hill

Hallandale Beach Commissioner Michele Lazarow, who like Lima-Taub is Jewish, said Wednesday she plans to seek a public reprimand of her colleague for promoting bigotry, fueling hatred and creating a hostile environment for the region’s Muslim community.

Denzel McCampbell, a spokesman for Tlaib, commended Lazarow for standing up against hateful rhetoric directed at Muslims. Tlaib has never advocated for violence, he added.

 “It is our hope that [Lima-Taub’s] community holds her accountable and encourages her to accept that our country is made up of all different faiths and ethnicities,” McCampbell said. “It is what makes America unique and special."

Muslim advocacy groups have been demanding an apology from Lima-Taub after the South Florida Sun Sentinel broke the story on Monday. Some have called for her resignation.

CAIR’s Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations accused Lima-Taub of promoting xenophobic stereotypes.

“CAIR-Florida strongly condemns the disgraceful racist and Islamophobic statements published by Commissioner Annabelle Lima-Taub,” director Wilfredo Ruiz said. “Her un-American, xenophobic statements establish that she is unfit to hold the commissioner’s seat. She must apologize immediately and follow up with her resignation.”

Lima-Taub posted remarks on Facebook on Tuesday saying she had no plans to apologize or resign.

She could not be reached for comment Wednesday despite four attempts: two phone calls and two text messages.

Lazarow’s request for a public censure will come before the commission on Jan. 23.

“While individual commissioners have spoken out against Commissioner Lima-Taub’s hateful and bigoted remarks, I believe we need to take action as a city,” Lazarow said. “We must send a message to our community that this behavior won’t be tolerated.”

Congresswoman at work

U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib leaves the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 9, 2019 after meeting with House Democrats to discuss the partial government shutdown. (Alex Wong/AFP-Getty)

Lazarow is likely to have enough votes on the five-member commission to support a reprimand, which will not require an unanimous vote.

Vice Mayor Sabrina Javellana and Commissioner Michael Butler have joined Lazarow in criticizing Lima-Taub for what some are calling an anti-Muslim rant.

Mayor Joy Adams has so far stayed mum.

Lazarow says she plans to withdraw her request for a reprimand should Lima-Taub “come to her senses” and issue a public apology.

“Instead of apologizing for her remarks, Commissioner Lima-Taub has doubled down, even going as far as demanding an apology from Congresswoman Tlaib,” Lazarow said. “I believe we must take action to show all who are watching that Hallandale Beach isn’t a place that tolerates hatred and bigotry.”

“There is no religious litmus test to hold public office in the United States and any politician who would spout this kind of vile anti-Muslim rhetoric is clearly not fit to govern,” said Scott Simpson, a spokesman for the civil rights group Muslim Advocates.

But at least one group has come out in support of Lima-Taub.

“The commissioner took a stand,” said Bob Kunst, president of Shalom International in Miami Beach. “She can be a hate-monger. Who cares? There’s a wave I see happening right now that’s very dangerous. The woman from Michigan is one spoke in a very big wheel of hatred.”

Still, Kunst said he thinks Lima-Taub went too far in saying Tlaib might “blow up” Capitol Hill.

“That was kind of stupid,” he said. “That was kind of silly. I don’t support that.”

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https://www.sun-sentinel.com/local/broward/hallandale/fl-ne-muslim-rant-hallandale-censure-20190116-story.html