Second Muslim Ever Elected to Congress – For 56 Days

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andre-carson.jpg On Tuesday, Indiana’s 7th Congressional District elected 33-year-old Andre Carson to the House of Representatives in a special election. Carson, a Muslim and a former cop, replaces his late grandmother, Julia Carson, the first African-American and the first woman to represent Indianapolis in Congress. Julia died in December of last year.

Carson is the second Muslim to ever serve in Congress. The first, Minnesota Representative Keith Ellison, was elected in 2006 and came under attack because of his faith. One can only hope that as more and more Muslims enter Congress, the openly discriminatory members (“In the next century we will have many more Muslims in the United States if we do not adopt strict immigration policies,” said Virginia Rep. Virgil Goode, a Republican) will realize that Islam doesn’t automatically turn people into monsters.

Carson won’t have long to make an impact, however. There is a Democratic primary on May 6 to determine who will run for election in November. If Carson is to serve into 2009, he’ll have to win three elections in the span of nine months.

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Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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