Emanuel Calls ADC to Repudiate Negative Comments About Arabs

 

Washington, DC | November 13, 2008 | www.adc.org | Today, Congressman Rahm Emanuel, recently appointed White House Chief of Staff to President-Elect Barack Obama, called American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) President Mary Rose Oakar to repudiate negative comments about Arabs made by his father Benjamin Emanuel .

In the phone call, Congressman Emanuel said, “From the fullness of my heart, I personally apologize on behalf of my family and me. These are not the values upon which I was raised or those of my family.” During the phone call, Emanuel added, it is unacceptable to make remarks such as these against any ethnic or religious group.

ADC President Mary Rose Oakar said, “We cannot allow Arabs and Muslims to be portrayed in these unacceptable terms. I welcome Rahm‘s apology and his pledge to meet with our Community. I also thank our members and friends who responded who expressed concern about this matter. ”

MEDIA COVERAGE:

NEW YORK TIMES: Emanuel Apologizes for Father‘s ‘Arab‘ Comments

TIME: RAHM EMANUEL'S FATHER PROBLEM

ABC NEWS: AMERICAN-ARAB ANTI-DISCRIMINATION COMMITTEE ASKS RAHM TO REPUDIATE HIS DAD'S COMMENTS

JEWISH TELEGRAPH AGENCY: ARAB-AMERICAN GROUP BLASTS EMANUEL‘S DAD

TEXT OF NOV. 11 ADC LETTER TO CONGRESSMAN EMANUEL

View letter online at: www.adc.org/PDF/rahm.pdf

Dear Congressman Emanuel:

I am writing to you on behalf of the largest American‐Arab Civil Rights group in the United States, with members in every State of the Union, founded in 1980. We work in coalition with all civil rights organizations.

This has been an historic election, one which energized our Country and gave many people the reason to vote for change. I know the Arab‐American community was very involved in this presidential election, and voter turnout in the community was exceptionally high. We wish to congratulate you on being named, by President‐Elect Obama, White House Chief of Staff. We were, however, deeply disappointed by comments made by your father, Mr. Benjamin Emanuel, on the momentous occasion of your announcement as Chief of Staff. According to numerous news stories in the U.S. and in Israel, he made the following comments in an interview with Ma‘ariv, “Obviously he‘ll inf