Rep. Ilhan Omar Sworn In, Takes Historic First Votes on House Floor

January 3, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON—Rep. Ilhan Omar was sworn in today as the Representative from Minnesota's 5th Congressional District, making her the first Somali-American Member of Congress, the first woman of color to represent Minnesota, and one of the first two Muslim-American women elected to Congress.

At her ceremonial swearing in, Rep. Omar used a Quran that belonged to her grandfather. As a teenager, Ilhan acted as her grandfather's translator at local caucuses in Minneapolis and he is the one who first sparked Rep. Omar's interest in politics.

"I am deeply honored and humbled to have the opportunity to bring the voices of the people of my district to Washington and to fight for our shared values - values that put people at the center of our democracy," Rep. Omar said. "I look forward to tackling many of the issues that I hear about most from my constituents - issues like investing in education and freeing students from the shackles of debt; ensuring a fair wage for a hard days work; creating a just immigration system and tackling the existential threat of climate change. 

"I plan to resist the current Administration's attempts to divide us and push destructive policies that chip away at our rights and freedoms. We have the opportunity to build a more inclusive and compassionate culture, one that will allow our economy to flourish and encourage more Americans to participate in our democracy."

With her first votes in the House, Rep. Omar voted for Nancy Pelosi, a steadfast leader to serve as Speaker of the House and for the Rules of the 116th Congress, which will usher in a more collaborative and effective way of governing. Rep. Omar was also proud to vote on legislation to bring an end to the Trump government shutdown and reject Trump's hateful border wall.