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Muslims endorse Gov Bush



Islamic political leaders cite Texas governor's outreach to their community

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The American Muslim Political Coordinating Council Political Action Committee (AMPCC-PAC) today announced its endorsement of George W. Bush for president, citing his outreach to the Muslim community and his stand on the issue of secret evidence.

(AMPCC-PAC is an affiliated PAC of the American Muslim Political Coordinating Council. AMPCC members include American Muslim Alliance, American Muslim Council, Council on American-Islamic Relations, and Muslim Public Affairs Council.) There are an estimated six million Muslims in the United States. Muslims constitute a potential swing-voting bloc in states such as California, New York, New Jersey, Illinois, Michigan and Ohio.

In several surveys of Muslim voters, the majority said they would vote for Bush. "Governor Bush took the initiative to meet with local and national representatives of the Muslim community. He also promised to address Muslim concerns on domestic and foreign policy issues," said AMPCC-PAC head Agha Saeed. The Muslim leaders also noted that Bush challenged the use of "secret evidence" at the second presidential debate.

American Muslims and civil libertarians believe secret evidence, as it is currently used in Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) deportation hearings, is unconstitutional. They believe that it is used disproportionately against Muslims in America. A number of Muslim detainees have been held for up to four years based on evidence that is not revealed to them or their attorneys.

The Secret Evidence Repeal Act currently awaits passage in the House and Senate.

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