Fashion

What the Women of the 116th Congress Wore

Stay true to your roots
By Helena Saadeh
January 05, 2019

Rashida Tleib

Rashida Harbi Tlaib is a Palestinian-American lawyer who is a Democratic US Representative for Michigan’s 13th Congressional district. Tlaib became the first Muslim woman to serve in the Michigan Legislature, and the first Muslim woman in history to be elected to any U.S. state legislature.

"And when your son looks at you and says, 'Mama look, you won. Bullies don't win,' and I said, 'Baby, they don't,' because we're gonna go in there and we're going to impeach the motherf****r," Tlaib said Thursday, speaking of Trump, according to a video posted on Twitter by Nestor Ruiz, an activist with United We Dream.

Tlaib prepared her Congressional gown in advance and hashtagged it #PalestinianThobe #ForMyYama. And for the first session of the 116th Congress, she was sworn in on Thomas Jefferson’s Quran, surrounded by her family and of course wearing her thobe.

Deb Haaland

But that’s not just it, Representative Deb Haaland from New Mexico wore a traditional Laguna Pueblo tribe dress along her mother too. The Thursday’s swearing-in session for the new members witnessed the first two Native American women joining the congress of the US.

On Facebook, she said: “"As a kid, I never could have imagined today. I will leave the ladder down behind me so girls of color know they can be anything they want to be."

Ilhan Omar

Ilhan who is the second Muslim Congresswoman, Representative from Minnesota, wore a bright orange hijab with yellow and a bit shiny stripes with a white boucle dress. Omar is in addition the 1st Somali American member of the legislative power and she was the 1st woman to wear a traditional Muslim hijab after pushing to change the 181-year old rule which forbid hats and head coverings in the house.

Barbara Lee                                          

Representative Barbara Lee from California tweeted that she was “proud to wear [her] kente cloth on the House Floor.”

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

The youngest memeber Ocasio-Cortez wore a white pantsuit that evoked homages to both the Facebook group Pantsuit Nation and Hillary Clinton’s signature pantsuits on the presidential campaign trail, in addition to the American Suffragettes, who wore white in their marches for women’s right to vote.

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