Rashida Tlaib made history in 2018 when she became the first female Muslim and Palestinian American ever to sit in the United States Congress. Much has been written about Tlaib following her nomination and subsequent election. And even though eyebrows were raised on both sides, it doesn’t take anything away from the fact that Tlaib has achieved much in her career. The single mother has had her struggles, one of which is her divorce from her husband, Fayez Talib. While Rashida has been highly covered since the election, not much is known about Fayez. So, for this article, we will try to make sense of what little is known about Fayez Talib.
Bits and pieces of Fayez Tlaib:
Fayez Tlaib was born on the 1st July 1976, in Beit Ur al-Fauqa, Palestine. Born and raised in Palestine, Fayez has revealed very little about himself. By the time Rashida came to fame, she had already divorced from Fayez. The pair married in 1998 when Rashida was just 22. In their years as a married couple, the pair had two children, Adam and Yousef. However, the duo divorced in 2015. Following the divorce, Fayez’s name rarely surfaces in the media.
Rashida Harbi was born on the 24th of July, 1976, as the eldest of 14 children. Born in a Palestinian working-class family in Detroit, Tlaib spent most of her early life taking care of her younger siblings. On the academic side of things, Tlaib graduated from Southwestern High School in Detroit in 1994. She later enrolled at Wayne State University and in 1998 graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science. Tlaib continued with her education and achieved her Juris Doctor at Western Michigan University Cooley Law School in 2004.
Tlaib’s political career started in 2004 as an intern with State Representative Steve Tobocman. When Tobocman decided to vacate his seat due to term limitations in 2008, he encouraged Tlaib to run for the vacant position. Tlaib ended up winning the general elections with over 90% of the vote. Following her two-year term, Tlaib was challenged by Jim Czachorowski in 2010 but she ended up winning with 85% of the votes and also subsequently fended off Republican challenger Darrin Daigle. After winning the 2012 election, Tlaib could no longer run due to term limitations and instead ran for the Michigan Senate, which she lost to Senator Virgil Smith Jr.
In 2018, Tlaib announced her nomination for John Conyers’s seat in Congress. She finished second in the Democratic primary for the special election to Detroit City Council President, Brenda Jones. In the Democratic primary for the general election, Tlaib beat Jones and became the first Palestinian-American woman to be elected to Congress. She took her oath on January 3, 2019, and instead of keeping her hand on the bible, she swore by an English-language translation of the Quran.
Role in Impeachment:
Tlaib has been a firm opponent of Donald Trump and had called for his impeachment since 2016. Following her oath-taking in 2019, Tlaib called for Trump’s impeachment even before the Mueller report was compiled. And while Trump has been quite vocal about his distaste for Tlaib’s practices, it has not stopped Tlaib. In 2019, Tlaib called for Trump’s impeachment in a radio interview with Mehdi Hasan of The Intercept.
“Look, it’s not a waste of time to hold the president of the United States accountable… We need to understand our duties as members of Congress and I believe looking at even Nixon’s impeachment, or his—literally, his resignation, it was Republicans and Democrats coming together and putting country first, coming together and putting our values first. You’re seeing it now more and more. Even now, they’re standing up to Steve King.”
Safe to say Tlaib stood by her views and Trump was impeached in 2020 making him the third president in the history of the United States to be impeached.