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Rashida Tlaib’s West Bank Family Celebrates Her Historic Win

BEIT UR AL-FAUQA, West Bank (Reuters) – Tuning into the news at dawn on Wednesday, the extended family of Rashida Tlaib, the first Palestinian-American woman to be elected to the U.S. Congress, celebrated her victory in their home in the Israeli occupied West Bank.

Tlaib, 44, a Democrat, ran virtually unopposed in Michigan’s 13th congressional district, which encompasses southwest Detroit and its suburbs. She will become the first Palestinian-American woman to serve in the U.S. Congress, and one of the first few Muslim women in Congress.

She has become “a source of pride for Palestine and the entire Arab and Muslim world,” her uncle, Bassam Tlaib, said in the small village of Beit Ur Al-Fauqa.

Tlaib’s district is home to one of the largest Arab-American populations in the United States. Her win highlights a wave of Palestinian diaspora candidates and activists who have embraced the Democratic Party’s progressive wing at a low point in U.S.-Palestinian relations under Donald Trump.

“I’m going to speak truth to power,” Tlaib told the Detroit Free Press on election night on Tuesday.

Ari Feldman is a staff writer at the Forward. Contact him at feldman@forward.com or follow him on Twitter @aefeldman

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