Minnesota state Rep.-elect Ilhan Omar, who was elected last month as the nation’s first Somali-American lawmaker, says she was threatened by a cabbie this week in Washington, D.C., for being Muslim.
Mrs. Omar, who was in the capital for public policy meetings at the White House, wrote in a Facebook post Wednesday afternoon that she was “subjected to the most hateful, derogatory, islamophobic, sexist taunts and threats” by a cabbie who was driving her back to her hotel.
“The cab driver called me ISIS and threatened to remove my hijab, I wasn’t really sure how this encounter would end as I attempted to rush out of his cab and retrieve my belongs,” she wrote. “I am still shaken by this incident and can’t wrap my head around how bold being [sic] are becoming in displaying their hate towards Muslims. I pray for his humanity and for all those who harbor hate in their hearts.”
Responding to one commenter, Mrs. Omar said she had not yet reported the incident.
“I plan to report once I am back home safe in Minneapolis, he knows the hotel I am staying at and don’t feel safe enough to say anything at the moment,” she wrote.
Akhilesh Menawat, a representative for Mrs. Omar, said Wednesday afternoon that his client is declining further comment because she wants to focus on the conference, the Star Tribune reported.
The 34-year-old Democrat made history on Nov. 8 as the country’s first Somali-American legislator. She beat Republican Abdimalik Askar, also a Somali-American, in the Minnesota House of Representatives general election.