Muslim Congresswoman Sworn In Using Koran

She was also wearing a traditional Arab thobe
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 3, 2019 2:14 PM CST
Muslim Congresswoman Sworn In Using Koran
A sign marks the office of incoming Rep. Rashida Tlaib, a freshman Democrat representing Michigan's 13th Congressional District, in the Longworth House Office Building, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, Dec. 31, 2018.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Rashida Tlaib was sworn in to Congress Thursday—as one of the first two Muslim women ever elected to the House of Representatives—and her swearing-in was historic in multiple ways. Tlaib, a Democratic Socialist representing Michigan’s 13th congressional district and the first Palestinian-American woman to serve in the House, was sworn in using Thomas Jefferson's personal copy of the Koran, a 1734 English translation by George Sale that is housed in the Library of Congress, USA Today reports. It's the same two-volume copy that Rep. Keith Ellison was sworn in on 12 years ago when he became Congress' first-ever Muslim member. She was also wearing a thobe, a traditional Middle Eastern garment, for the ceremony, the Cut reports.

Muslim women were celebrating Tlaib's swearing-in as well as the swearing-in of Congress' other first Muslim female member, Ilhan Omar, ThinkProgress reports. Omar, the first refugee and the first Somali-American to serve in Congress, is a Democrat representing Minnesota's 5th congressional district. As Vox explains, her clothing choice is also historic; she will be the first to wear a hijab in Congress. A 181-year-old rule banning head coverings on the House floor was overturned as of Thursday. One more headline in the wake of the historic swearing-in: Tlaib's sons dabbed on the House floor to celebrate their mom's first vote, reports Esquire, which has video. (This Congress is "like none other.")

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