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Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence

Representing the 14th District of Michigan

Congresswoman Lawrence on the Presidential Address to the Nation

February 27, 2017
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Rep. Brenda Lawrence (MI-14) today released a statement regarding the upcoming Presidential Address to Congress and the Nation:

“Tomorrow, February 28, I will be attending President Trump’s first address to the joint session of Congress. The speech presents another chance for the President to address the concerns of our country and bring the nation together as he promised. In his first month in office, this administration has taken almost daily actions that have stirred up feelings of fear, division and mistrust across the country.  There is a great deal to be concerned about and so much to address.

“My guest for the evening will be a constituent; Fatima Salman, Executive Director of Muslim Students Association (MSA) National. Fatima also serves on the board of the Michigan Muslim Community Council, and is a proud native of Michigan. She released the following statement:

"I am so honored to be invited by my Congresswoman, a woman who fights for the rights of her constituency.  This invitation comes at a time where myself and so many others feel threatened that our constitutional rights are, or will be, taken away from us. I made the decision to attend this event because I want my children and our youth to know that we are an integral part of the fabric of America, and especially here in Michigan. My father was an engineer at Chrysler and mother a Montessori teacher. They, and so many other American Muslims in our great state, have contributed to the betterment of our country. It is an honor to be able to represent them and their work." –Fatima Salman

“Muslim-American’s and people of Arab decent have contributed a great deal to our communities and have routinely been attacked and discriminated against in the months since President Trump’s election. As the Representative of Michigan’s diverse 14th district, I’ve repeatedly stood up against the divisive rhetoric, and reckless actions on immigrants, refugees and minorities. I was proud to stand with hundreds of Michiganders at the Detroit International Airport following the sudden release of the Muslim ban from the Trump administration, and am inspired by not just their passion, but by their compassion for those unjustly disenfranchised groups. This spirit of the people I’m privileged to represent in Congress is a corner stone of our American values and a vibrant democracy.

“We all will be listening very closely to Trump’s words during this address.  We can only hope to hear words of hope, unity and progress from the 45th President during his address.  We have come too far as a country and we simply cannot go back to the failed fallacies of racism, classism and hatred that divides and weakens us as a nation.  American is better than that, and we need to act like it.”