A beauty queen who represented Iraq in Miss Universe 2017 is now looking to represent Californians in Congress, telling “Fox & Friends First” on Monday that she’s eyeing a run for office and is vowing to take on the “woke” wing of her own party in the process.
Sarah Idan, born in Baghdad, lived under Saddam Hussein’s rule and served as a translator for the U.S. Army during the Iraq War before she fled the country and later became a U.S. citizen. Though the California Democrat is pushing back against the extremist wing of her own party, she wants to make clear that she still aligns with traditional liberalism.
“Let me be clear, I do stand for old-fashioned, classic liberal values, but when I see people like Ilhan Omar, AOC and ‘The Squad’ who are trying to pull our party to the far left, I have to say something,” she said.
“Sadly, these far-left voices, like ‘The Squad,’ they are very loud, and they do talk a lot. They get a lot of attention from the media, but I do believe there are a lot of Democrats who don’t agree with them, who love this country and want to make it better.”
The 33-year-old said she feels as if people who align with her identity as a Muslim immigrant woman are underrepresented in the Democratic Party and in the media’s portrayal of the party.
“That’s why I’m trying to run, just to represent people like me, who think like me but don’t have a voice.”
She told Todd Piro and Ashley Strohmier that, if elected, she would prioritize issues like crime, inflation and foreign and domestic policy, particularly catering to the needs of those in her district near Los Angeles, where she says crime has spiked by 11% in a year.
Idan previously denounced antisemitism from Islamic extremists, saying they push hatred of Jews as a way to gain power in the Middle East. She even caught flak from Iraqi media when she posted a selfie with Miss Israel, Adar Gandelsman at a 2017 pageant in Las Vegas.
“I was in Miss Universe and I took a selfie with Miss Israel, which caused the Iraqi government to decide to take my Iraqi citizenship from me,” Idan said in an interview at the time. “Basically my family ended up leaving Iraq. I had to leave Iraq just for taking a selfie with Miss Israel.”
She visited Israel the following year, saying she wanted “peace for everyone, for Israelis, for Palestinians.”
Idan said many Americans don’t recognize their privilege, but she is proud to live in the U.S. because she is able to acknowledge her own.
“They [other Americans] did not have the hardships that we had – being an immigrant, coming from Iraq, living under a dictatorship, having absolutely no voice no rights, and I couldn’t even voice my concerns. I came here [and] I’m treated as an equal to every person I meet on the street. I have a voice, I have a platform,” she said.
“I can say anything I want without the fear of being killed of executed. There are a million reasons to be a proud American, and I think a lot of people sadly take it for granted.”