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Harmeet Dhillon addresses ‘concerns that have been raised’ about her Sikh faith in RNC chair race

Dhillon sent out an email to Alabama Republicans this week about her commitment to religious liberty. After Alabama’s GOP cast a vote of no confidence in Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel, her leading opponent, Harmeet Dhillon, decided Monday to address questions about her Sikh faith.
“I would like to take a minute to address concerns that have been raised by a small handful of Alabama Republican Party activists regarding my faith and how that would impact my ability to champion our nation’s Judeo-Christian values that are encapsulated in our Party Platform,” Dhillon said in a mass email to Alabama’s Republican Party steering committee. Dhillon went on to bash McDaniel’s leadership, contrasting it with her job fighting “the woke mob” as a civil rights and constitutional lawyer and the need to battle “cultural Marxists.”
Dhillon never explicitly mentioned that she is Sikh, but she emphasized the importance of faith to the Founding Fathers, saying “they considered religious liberty to be so foundational that it is the very first item referenced in the very first amendment of our Bill of Rights.”
Her supporters have publicly said that they see an attempt to undermine her with Christian conservatives — the base of the GOP, especially in Alabama. Alabama Republican and former secretary of state candidate Chris Horn acknowledged in an interview that he had talks with other Republicans about Dhillon and her religion, but he said they were not motivated by religious bigotry. He also criticized Dhillon for not explaining more about Sikhism in her email.
As one of the party’s most recognizable Black Republicans in the state, Horn told NBC News that he was asked by about a dozen fellow Republicans about Dhillon because they thought she was Black as well. So, he said, he discussed what he knew of her, shared via text message a video clip of her leading a Sikh prayer at the 2016 Republican National Convention and answered questions as best he could.
“It’s OK to be a big tent party and ask questions,” he said. “So she’s a Sikh. What does that mean? How does that impact policy? Maybe she would be an awesome, great and wonderful chair. But I do know Ronna McDaniel has been proven that she’s been investing in the faith-based communities, and communities of color in urban areas and she has worked very hard.”