Ellison celebrates Ramadan at White House

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Rep. Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to Congress, was among a group of lawmakers and government officials invited to the White House Wednesday night to celebrate the annual Ramadan holiday with President Obama.

Others invited included Secretary of the Department of Defense Robert Gates, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, Attorney General Eric Holder, and members of the diplomatic corps from a range of countries, including Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Afghanistan, Morocco, Kenya, Israel, Indonesia, Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Iraq and Egypt.

Other members of Congress invited included Democratic Reps. John Conyers of Michigan, Rush Holt of New Jersey and Andre Carson of Indiana. Carson is the only other Muslim in Congress other than Ellison. Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., was also invited.

Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Charley Underwood on 09/02/2009 - 04:32 pm.

    I am usually quite scornful of politicians who flaunt their piety, since it seems more self-serving than truly religious. But Keith Ellison is a completely different case, in my opinion. In the first place, Congressman Ellison shows us a side of Islam that the press tends to ignore, but that is much closer to true Islam. He shows us the discipline and sacrifice of Ramadan that illustrate the best of all world religions. Second, I have seen evidence of the subtle but important positive changes that Keith’s religion have made in him as a person. It is what we can all hope for from our religious practices.

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