In Tuesday’s Democratic primary for the Minnesota House of Representatives, Ilhan Omar, a hijab-wearing Somali woman, defeated 44-year incumbent Phyllis Kahn and will likely become the first female Muslim legislator in U.S. history in November. The district is made up mostly of college students and immigrants, offering zero chance for her Republican challenger in November.
Omar escaped perpetual war in Somalia as a child and lived with her family for four years in a Kenyan refugee camp before being resettled by the United Nations and U.S. State Department in Minnesota. Now 33, she works as a community organizer, serving as director of policy initiatives at Women Organizing Women, “where she empowers East African women to take civic leadership roles in their community,” according to her website. READ MORE