Published: Sun, January 13, 2019

Muslim Republican survives recall vote over his religion

Muslim Republican survives recall vote over his religion

Shafi is one of two party vice chairmen and has worked for the party for about 10 years, including as a delegate to the state party convention.

The Tarrant County Republican Party will decide whether Shahid Shafi, who was appointed vice chairman of the county GOP organization in July, will stay on his job.

The Tarrant County Republican Party's executive committee voted to make Shahid Shafi, a trauma surgeon, a vice chairman last July in a almost unanimous vote, according Jeremy Bradford, the county party's executive director.

Some party members claim Shafi may be more loyal to Islamic law or connected to a terrorist group. "And unfortunately, I don't think it will be the last either", Shafi told The Washington Post.

O'Brien and Shafi did not return ABC News' requests for comment. Shafi is a surgeon and City Council member in suburban Fort Worth.

"We don't think he's suitable as a practicing Muslim to be vice chair because he'd be the representative for ALL Republicans in Tarrant County, and not ALL Republicans in Tarrant County think Islam is safe or acceptable", O'Brien said in a Facebook post. Ted Cruz and Land Commissioner George P. Bush have condemned the efforts to oust Shafi.

"This vote reaffirms the commitment by a majority of Tarrant County Republicans to our core values and moral compass. which strictly prohibit religious and racial discrimination of any kind", Easton said in a statement.

"I heard from a few people that if Shafi is removed they'll resign", said Brian Bledsoe, a Tarrant County GOP precinct chairman.

"Darl's leadership has brought disunity to the party", said Tarrant Republican James Scott Trimm in an online petition demanding Easton's resignation. "Most of them already have a prejudice against Muslims, and a lot of that comes from the attack on 9/11 and the Shariah law they claim all Muslims must obey".

Originally from India and Pakistan, Shafi became a USA citizen in 2009 and has been in the vice chairmanship position since July.

In an open letter, Shafi said he is confident in the Tarrant County GOP's "fundamental sense of fairness" and called on those in doubt to "build trust by breaking bread with our neighbors who don't look like us or talk with an accent".

"Here are the facts". "I believe that the laws of our nation are our Constitution and the laws passed by our elected legislatures - I have never promoted any form of Sharia Law".

Her Facebook page is full of tirades against a perceived Muslim onslaught on America and she regularly cites content from Islamophobic website, Jihad Watch, to support her arguments.

"As an immigrant to this great country, I am honored and privileged to receive the support of my fellow Republicans".

Riddlesperger points out the vote could prove costly for the Tarrant County GOP. Tarrant County includes the city of Forth Worth. Konni Burton of Colleyville. "Doubling down on shrinking the tent is a very bad idea".

Though party leaders say they typically have security at the entrances of every meeting, there was a noticeable police presence inside and outside the church and a large group of local and national media covering the meeting. "I mean, what is the religious standard that they want to impose?" "We were fighting for religious freedom.and today we have come out victorious", Shafi said.

"As long as someone is a US citizen, has obeyed the laws of the country, paid their taxes and so forth, they have an equal right to be involved in city, county, state or national government", Easton said.

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