Why President Trump is Doing Iftar All Wrong // Media Mentions

Media appearances on the 2018 White House iftar

June 7, 2018

The White House iftar is a prime example of the Trump administration talking ABOUT Muslims instead of talking TO us. Our job is to change that. If the president won't listen to us, we will make sure the American public will. Within 24 hours, we've appeared on national media over 10 times.


Dear President Trump: You’re Doing Iftar All Wrong (Politico)

By Zaki Barzinji. Last year, President Trump skipped the annual White House iftar — the traditional meal when Muslims break their Ramadan fast – reinforcing the perception that he doesn’t believe it’s his job to represent all Americans. So you might think that tonight when the president will finally host an iftar feast, would be a step forward. But you’d be wrong.

Video Interviews


American Muslims on Trump's iftar: Thanks, but no thanks (CNN.com)

Omar Noureldin, vice president and spokesman for the Muslim Public Affairs Council, said that, in contrast to past years, no one from his council was invited to Wednesday's iftar. If they were, they would decline the invitation, he said. "Our model of engagement with the government is that we have to believe we can move the needle in some respect, and given the policy and rhetoric from this White House, we don't believe that's possible, so we wouldn't put ourselves in the position to be 'tokenized.'"

Trump’s White House Iftar Is Missing Major American Muslim Groups (Huffington Post)

Hoda Hawa, MPAC’s director of policy and advocacy, told HuffPost that her organization has attended iftars and Eid receptions at the White House since the Clinton administration. She said MPAC saw those meetings as an opportunity to bring up critical issues that impacted American Muslims and, as a result, did not boycott any of the receptions.

Trump’s First Iftar Dinner Was Criticized As A “Sham” By Muslim Americans (Buzzfeed)

Omar Noureldin, vice president of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, called it “a sad state of affairs” to “deviate from 20 years of tradition to break fast with foreign diplomats rather than his fellow Americans who happen to be Muslim. Many American Muslims, even if they had been invited to Trump's White House Iftar, would not have attended,” Noureldin said. “This is because the administration has done nothing to build bridges with a community it's targeted both politically and rhetorically.”

Muslim groups will be absent as Donald Trump hosts Iftar dinner (The Guardian)

Hoda Hawa, the director of policy and advocacy at the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), said, “There has been no real engagement, no real effort to even invite members of our faith communities, to have conversations with the White House or administration. His politics have shown us, not just as Muslims but as Americans, that he is a president and a person who does not appreciate the contributions of Muslims to America.”

Marine Corps' Top General Joins Ramadan Meal (NPR)

Omar Noureldin, vice president of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, said in light of American Muslims not being part of the White House iftar, it "points to a larger theme that has been developing under this president that Islam is a foreign religion. American Muslims have been a part of this country since its founding."

Trump White House under fire for lack of Muslim-American representation at Ramadan celebration (Vox)

Hoda Hawa, MPAC's director of policy and advocacy commented on the Trump administration's lack of real engagement or effort to have conversations with members of the American Muslim community. 

Help us continue our work with a quick
one-time or monthly donation.