Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Corporate gatekeepers and big tech monopolists are making it more difficult than ever for independent media to survive. Please chip in today.

For Immediate Release


Press Release

Muslim Advocates Condemns Anti-Muslim Question in VA Lieutenant Governor Debate


At a debate for Virginia’s Democratic primary for lieutenant governor on Tuesday, moderator and WJLA anchor Dave Lucas asked Del. Sam Rasoul an anti-Muslim question. During the debate, Lucas brought up donations Rasoul received from Muslim advocacy groups and asked him to “assure Virginians if you’re elected, you’ll represent all of them, regardless of faith or beliefs?” No similar question about donors or faith was asked of any of the other candidates. Rasoul is the first Muslim elected to Virginia’s legislature and, if elected, would be only the second Muslim ever elected to any statewide office in the U.S. As documented on page 11 of the Muslim Advocates report Running on Hate, all four of Virginia’s statewide elections in 2017 and 2018 were plagued with anti-Muslim rhetoric and statements and all of the candidates who used this rhetoric lost. The following is a statement from Muslim Advocates Public Advocacy Director Scott Simpson:

“The way Delegate Rasoul was singled out as a Muslim and had his loyalty questioned is shameful. Virginia’s recent elections have been rife with anti-Muslim bigotry. Suggesting that Muslims are disloyal, foreign and have values that are contrary to the Constitution are false, harmful, anti-Muslim tropes. It’s insulting to Virginian and American values for a debate moderator to inject this type of bigotry into a televised debate.

Del. Rasoul has been serving in the Virginia House of Delegates and representing all Virginians in his district, regardless of faith, for more than six years now. By questioning his loyalty, Lucas, whether he knew it or not, was invoking a deeply-ingrained, anti-Muslim trope pushed by hate groups for years. Sadly, this is a common occurrence for American Muslims in public life. As our report Running on Hate exposed, American Muslims running for office regularly face anti-Muslim attacks. The biased question Lucas asked Rasoul reinforces harmful, false stereotypes and prevents American Muslims from participating in public life. WJLA’s Dave Lucas owes Del. Rasoul and Virginia’s voters an apology.”

Muslim Advocates is a 501(c)(3) charity and does not endorse or oppose candidates for office.


Muslim Advocates is a national civil rights organization working in the courts, in the halls of power and in communities to halt bigotry in its tracks. We ensure that American Muslims have a seat at the table with expert representation so that all Americans may live free from hate and discrimination. 

Australian Progressives Hail 'Greenslide' Amid Big Left Wins and Morrison's Ouster

"People have backed the Greens in record numbers and delivered a massive mandate for action on climate and inequality," said party leader Adam Bandt.

Brett Wilkins ·

Omar Leads Charge Against Baby Formula Monopolies Amid US Shortage

Democrats urge the FTC to probe "any unfair or unsustainable practices, like deceptive marketing, price gouging, and stock buybacks, that may be weakening our nutritional formula supply."

Jessica Corbett ·

'Arbitrary, Racist, and Unfair': Judge Blocks Biden From Ending Title 42

"Only the coyotes profiteering off of people seeking protection have reason to celebrate this ill-reasoned ruling," said one migrant rights advocate.

Brett Wilkins ·

'This Is a War' for Democratic Party's Future, Says Sanders of AIPAC's Super PAC

"They are doing everything they can to destroy the progressive movement in this country," said the senator.

Julia Conley ·

Ginni Thomas Pressed Arizona Lawmakers to Reverse Biden's 2020 Win: Report

"Clarence Thomas' continued service on the Supreme Court is a scandalous and appalling breach of judicial ethics," said one observer. "He is implementing the exact same theories that his wife used to try to steal the 2020 election for Trump."

Brett Wilkins ·

Common Dreams Logo