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Congressman warns against 'Muslims elected to office'

December 21, 2006|From the Associated Press

WASHINGTON — A Republican congressman has told constituents that unless immigration is tightened, "many more Muslims" will be elected and follow the lead of a recently elected lawmaker who plans to use the Koran at his swearing-in.

Rep. Virgil H. Goode Jr. (R-Va.) made the comments in a letter sent to hundreds of constituents who had written to him about Rep.-elect Keith Ellison, a Minnesota Democrat and the first Muslim elected to Congress. Ellison was born in Detroit.

In the letter, Goode wrote, "The Muslim representative from Minnesota was elected by the voters of that district, and if American citizens don't wake up and adopt the Virgil Goode position on immigration, there will likely be many more Muslims elected to office and demanding the use of the Koran."

Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. (D-N.J.) wrote to Goode on Wednesday saying that he was "greatly disappointed and in fact startled" by Goode's letter.

"I take your remarks as personally offensive to the large community of Muslim-Americans I represent in the Eighth District of New Jersey."

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