Muslim mayor barred from White House says Biden needs to reassess ‘selectee watch list’
The United States Secret Service still has not provided many answers about why New Jersey’s longest-serving Muslim mayor was barred from a White House event this week.
Prospect Park Mayor Mohamed Khairullah says that the agency did not offer an apology or explanation as to why he was not allowed to attend an Eid event with President Joe Biden.
But the mayor said on News 12 New Jersey’s Power & Politics that he remains a “loyal Democrat.”
Khairullah says that the issue is not about him. He says he wants attention to be turned to the group of 1.5 million people on the “selectee watch list” that dates back to the Sept. 11 attacks.
RELATED: Muslim Prospect Park mayor questions White House watchlist after he’s barred from Eid event
A leak revealed his name is on it, and he believes that list got him barred from the White House, as well as made him endure several unpleasant trips through airport security over the last four years.
Democratic Sens. Cory Booker and Bob Menendez and Democratic Rep. Bill Pascrell have demanded explanations on what happened this week. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre diverted questions to the Secret Service.
The mayor says that when it comes to information or explanation from the White House, the silence is deafening.
“That does not take [President Biden] off the seat of being questioned why. What can we do about it? He has to do something about it,” Khairullah says. “And in my mind, the Arab and Muslim community have to make this a focal issue in the next presidential race.”
Biden spoke at the Eid celebration about pushing back against Islamophobia. But the mayor says those are empty words as long as the selectee list remains in place. He wants the president to eliminate that list and for the president to be consistent with his own words.
Khairullah says he's still supporting Biden for reelection.