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October 23rd, 2008
06:12 PM ET

A republican Muslim no more

Hesham A. Hassaballa
Beliefnet.com contributor

 
I have voted ever since I came of age at 18. I still remember voting for Ross Perot while I was away at college at Marquette University.

But ever since then, I have been a Republican. I have even been a committeeman and assistant committeeman in my local Republican Party organization. And in 2000, my wife and I both well remember when I left her in labor at the hospital long enough to go and enthusiastically cast my vote for George W. Bush.

I have always been attracted to the GOP and have felt most at home in the party of Abraham Lincoln. After all, I do live in the Land of Lincoln. More importantly, I like the Republican Party’s traditional ideals: Government should not dictate to people what they do in their own personal lives; government should not intrude on people's privacy; taxes are the people's money and should be handled with the utmost care. Moreover, my socially conservative views are welcome in the Republican Party, and I do not feel ridiculed as I sometimes do when I engage Democrats in conversation.

But in the past seven years, I have had a tremendous identity crisis as a American Muslim Republican. And after much gut-wrenching contemplation, I have decided to leave the Party.

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Filed under: Hesham A. Hassaballa • Islam • Raw Politics • Religion • Republicans