Imraan Siddiqi (D-Sammamish) is running to be the next U.S. Representative for Washington's 8th congressional district.

If elected, Siddiqi would replace incumbent Rep. Kim Schrier, also a Democrat from Sammamish.

Siddiqi is a second-generation Indian immigrant and former businessman. Today he heads up the Washington chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim advocacy group. It's his job to intervene on behalf of vulnerable and put-upon Muslims.

Religious-based bullying, for example, is something he deals with all too often. He says Muslim students are being targeted and harassed much more frequently than they were prior to October, when the Islamist militant group Hamas attacked an Israeli music festival.

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That onslaught gave rise to the Israel-Hamas War. Siddiqi's congressional campaign is an outgrowth of his disenchantment not only with the war, but with Schrier herself. The congresswoman is vigorously pro-Israel - she once touted her "unquestionable love" for the country - and has periodically upbraided critics of the Netanyahu government.

In December, Schrier voted to censure her Palestinian-American colleague, Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI). Schrier was one of just 22 House Democrats to do so.

"We've been dealing with a lot of failed moral leadership from our elected officials," Siddiqi says. "But Schrier, unfortunately, has stood out even among the remaining elected officials in Washington State for her failure to call for a ceasefire. She continues to vote to exacerbate these bombing campaigns."

Schrier, now in her third term, was first elected amid the "blue wave" of 2018.

Much like California, Washington has a blanket primary system: the top two vote getters, regardless of party, advance to the general election. This is referred to colloquially as a "jungle" primary.

Pro Palestine Protesters in Downtown Casper

29 November 2023

Gallery Credit: Kolby Fedore, Townsquare Media

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