Muslims declare moral victory in Pipes appointment

In a statement released this morning, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said:

“While a defeat for democracy, the president’s backdoor appointment of Daniel Pipes is a moral victory for the tens of thousands of American Muslims, Arab-Americans, Christians, Jews, and civil rights activists who contacted the White House and the Senate since the nomination was announced in April.

“By issuing this recess appointment, the president acknowledges that Pipes’ nomination would have been turned down by the Senate, despite that body’s Republican majority. Without being approved by the Senate, Pipes will serve just 18 months of what would have been a four-year term.

“The campaign to defeat Pipes’ nomination and to expose his bigoted views also showed the Muslim and Arab-American communities that there are those in Congress who will stand up for what is right, despite tremendous political pressure to remain silent. At a July 23 Senate committee meeting on Pipes’ nomination, Sens. Edward Kennedy (D-MA), Christopher Dodd (D-CT) and Tom Harkin (D-IA) all opposed the appointment. Sen. Harkin, who was involved in the formation of the USIP, spoke at length about Pipes’ statements warning of the ‘dangers’ posed by the enfranchisement of American Muslims and his ‘dossiers’ on academic critics of Israeli policies.

“Perhaps the most positive by-product of the campaign was the creation of a broad coalition of religious, ethnic, and civil liberties groups that will last long after Pipes takes his seat on the USIP board.”

CAIR news report, 25 August 2003