Tlaib was born in 1974, in America. Both her parents were born in Arab cities in Israel. Rashida is the eldest of 14 children and played a huge role in raising her siblings. Her father worked in an assembly line in a Ford Motor Company plant.
In 2018 she announced that she would run for Congress. Rashida represents Michigan’s 13th Congressional District. This district includes most of Detroit, along with many other western suburbs. Before being elected to Congress, Rashida represented Michigan’s 6th and 12th District in the Michigan House of Representatives. Rashida Tlaib is the first Palestinian American woman to sit in Congress.
Tlaib has opposed giving financial aid to Israel, and supported the Palestinian right to return and the one state solution. Rashida is also one of the few members of Congress who are outspokenly in favor of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement.
In September 2018, The New York Times reported that Tlaib walked into her family’s mosque to express her gratitude for the opportunity to run for Congress by saying “Today I was being thankful, embracing how incredibly blessed I am to grow up here, to have this tremendous opportunity…Sometimes I say ‘Thank her’ because my Allah, is She.” The Detroit Free Press reported that, although she recognizes that some in her faith community consider her not “Muslim enough”, she believes that “Allah understands” and “knows that I am giving back and doing things that I think are reflective of Islam”.
While Palestinian Americans are typically not more politically active than the population at large they are very politically aware of their history and the issues facing their homeland. They are more active in social organizations, such as mosques and local associations, than in political ones, though the former have strong political implications. In the absence of a Palestinian State the unity and preservation of communities in the diaspora serve to maintain Palestinian identity.