President Obama has appointed the first Muslim federal judge, a Pakistani immigrant who has practiced law in the United States for 10 years and was educated at American universities, but it’s his ties to Islamists, including those in the Saudi Arabian government, that could prove troubling for senators being asked to approve his nomination.
While Abid Qureshi has never been a judge and thus has no clear record to inspect, his private practice defending Muslim civil rights and the celebration of his appointment by Islamist organizations give reason for concern, say experts in Islam.
Qureshi has defended two Muslim filmmakers in their quest to get pro-Islamic “anti-Islamophobia” advertisements placed in the New York subway system, and he also represented the Saudi Arabian government in a dispute involving a Shariah-compliant Islamic school in the U.S.
“I wonder how this Muslim judge would rule in my First Amendment cases before the federal court,” [Pamela] Geller told WND in an email. “Would he stand firmly with the freedom of speech enshrined in the First Amendment, or would he defer to his belief system and rule in accordance with the Shariah? His activity in regard to ‘The Muslims Are Coming!’ strongly suggest the latter.”
His appointment to serve on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, which requires Senate approval, was hailed by the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the Islamic Society of North America.
CAIR and ISNA are offshoots of the extremist Muslim Brotherhood and have links to the Hamas terrorist organization as documented by the FBI during the Holy Land Foundation trial in 2007.
CAIR celebrated Qureshi’s appointment on its Facebook page Wednesday.
Qureshi has since 2012 headed up the pro bono (charity) division of Latham and Watkins, a major Washington, D.C., law firm.
His pro bono clients have included prisoners, foreign-educated physical therapists and the National Organization of Concerned Black Men, according to the National Law Journal.
Most troubling for those concerned that Qureshi’s allegiance to Islamic law may influence his view of the U.S. Constitution is his work representing a private school with ties to the hard-line Saudi Arabian government in a case before the National Labor Relations Board.
Abid Qureshi and his team represented the Islamic Saudi Academy, a K-12 private school with the backing of the Saudi government. “The school is on a mission of providing education ‘rooted in the Islamic faith’ to young people of Saudi Arabia residing in the U.S., especially children of government officials and Saudi diplomats,” according to National Law Journal.
Spencer, who blogs at JihadWatch.com, told WND that even if Qureshi’s record is unblemished by any connections to terror-stained groups or persons, the appointment is an ominous sign about the future of American politics.
“Even if this judge’s background is spotless and patriotism unquestionable, this appointment bodes ill for the future. The Obama administration, and Hillary Clinton, deny that jihad terror has anything to do with Islam,” Spencer told WND in an email. “They have assiduously courted, supported and collaborated with the Muslim Brotherhood. How will they be able to vet potential judicial appointees who are Muslim for sympathies to a jihad they don’t admit exists, much less Shariah supremacism and more?”
The fact that CAIR is hailing the appointment is also not a good sign, Spencer said.
“It suggests that they know he is in line with their agenda – they don’t hail Muslims who aren’t,” he said.
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