Over a quarter million Muslims have become registered voters since the last presidential election, reported a Muslim group on Tuesday.
In June, there were 824,000 registered Muslim voters whose first, middle or last names matched a list of 43,538 traditionally Muslim names, according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations, which used a private national database of voter information.
That number represents a significant increase from the 500,000 voters the group accounted for in 2012, using the same method.
CAIR believes that one reason for the surge is the following:
“increased political involvement resulting from rhetorical attacks on that faith community by public figures.” While the press release does not mention GOP presumptive nominee Donald Trump by name, it does contain two links to articles about how the candidate is “attacking Muslims” and “fueling prejudice, hate incidents.”
CAIR government affairs director Robert McCaw applauded the Muslim community for its efforts to get out the vote, and slammed “hostile” proposals made by Trump throughout his campaign, including a ban on Muslims entering the United States.
“As a community under the pressure of hostile political rhetoric calling for profiling of American Muslims, Muslim immigration bans and warrantless surveillance of mosques, we must utilize all the tools of positive civic engagement to preserve religious freedom and other constitutional rights,” said McCaw.
Earlier this month, CAIR launched a nonpartisan voter campaign, titled “Muslims Vote,” to encourage increased participation by American Muslims in the 2016 election cycle. The campaign seeks out ways to get American Muslims involved in volunteering, voter registration and hosting candidate forums.