Defend Rashida!

DSA member Rashida Tlaib is targeted for reelection defeat because of her opposition to genocide in Palestine. We need to keep her in Congress.


Pictures from the kickoff above are courtesy of Jim West.

“She’s so regular.” This is what you hear over and over from Detroiters when you ask why they support Rashida Tlaib. “She’s real.” “She really means it.” “She actually cares about people.” It’s the opposite of most politicians.

At Rashida’s reelection campaign kickoff Saturday, about 100 Black, white, and Arab Michiganders came to hear her talk about the movements that give her strength: for water as a human right, for driver’s licenses regardless of immigration status, “the rent is too damn high,” for stopping fossil fuel subsidies, Black Lives Matter, the UAW strikes. “We didn’t get civil rights or the right to organize unions because of who was president at the time,” Tlaib said. “We got it when the streets demanded it.”

The call-out that got the most applause was for the ceasefire movement. People were at her rally not just because of Rashida’s years of service to every good cause, but because she is under attack right now, censured by her colleagues in the House of Representatives for supposedly “promoting false narratives” about Hamas’s October 7 attack on Israel and “calling for the destruction of the state of Israel.” Every Republican in the state legislature where she once served has called on her to resign. Democratic Majority for Israel bought a TV ad in Detroit accusing her of standing with terrorism. Two Democrats say that AIPAC has offered them $20 million to run against her in 2024.

AIPAC is going after all members of the Squad next year, but to knock off the most outspoken pro-Palestine member of Congress, a Palestinian-American herself, would be AIPAC’s crowning achievement. “They are ready to set a hell of a lot of money on fire,” Tlaib said at the rally. “I’m not afraid of the bullies.”

 Rashida’s safely Democratic district includes part of Detroit (majority Black), all of Dearborn (majority Arab), all of Southfield (majority Black), and some mostly white suburbs. She won her 2022 primary handily against an incompetent campaigner, the Detroit City Clerk. This will be the first time that she may face a serious challenge for Congress.

Detroit DSA brought our new window signs to the rally, which were eagerly snapped up: Defend Rashida, they said, in red, black and green. Building on our strong relationship, working for her reelection will be a main goal of the chapter for the next eight months.

You can donate to counter AIPAC’s money here.

Jane Slaughter is a former editor of Labor Notes, a co-author of Secrets of a Successful Organizer, and a member of the Detroit DSA chapter. She is also a member of DSA’s Bread & Roses caucus.