Arab Americans and the Election

I regularly have breakfast with two other Arab American journalists at the Press Club in Washington, D.C. One is planning on voting for Hillary Clinton because of Donald Trump’s xenophobia and misogyny.

The other journalist plans to vote for Trump because he believes Clinton’s foreign policy will escalate the U.S. wars in Syria and elsewhere, which will lead to even more human devastation.

Polls conducted by Arab American organizations, including ArabAmerica.com, indicate that their views are not isolated. The Arab American community is split about which of the two candidates are, in fact, the worse of two evils.

Rather than voting for either disappointing candidate, I propose the following solution: Arab Americans should unite using VotePact.org and pair up. Instead of voting for candidates they don’t like to try to stop candidates they hate, people can strategically vote for candidates they actually want. What they would have to do is join together and both agree to vote for third parties of their choice: Jill Stein and Ajamu Baraka of the Green Party, or Gary Johnson and Bill Weld of the Libertarian Party, or whoever you most want.

My two friends can do this. Perhaps you can do this. Perhaps many people you know can do this.

Many Arab Americans and others rightly spoke up against Trump and Clinton when they both told Muslims that they had so “report” what they see – as if what fuels terrorism is the complicity of Arab and Muslim Americans.

But in another sense, it’s true that Arab Americans do have a special responsibility to report what they see: Two campaigns that offer either bigotry on the one hand, or warmongering on the other. Since the Arab American community is significantly split as to which is worse, the opportunity is open for the community to substantially get behind their true preferences: Candidates that reject both the corruption and perpetual war that Clinton personifies, as well as the demagoguery and degradation of women and minorities that Trump represents.

This article originally ran on ArabAmerican.com.

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Sam Husseini is founder of the website VotePact.org

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