February 5, 2016, Washington, DC—The highest-ranking Iranian American in political office was recently appointed to the 2016 Democratic National Convention Platform Committee by DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
State Senator Cyrus Habib was first elected to political office as a representative for Washington’s 48th District in the Washington House of Representatives in 2012. Two years later, Habib was elected to the Washington State Senate with 65% of the vote and then selected as Senate Democratic Whip. The blind senator is the first Iranian American to serve in a state legislature and his position as Democratic Whip places him as the highest ranking Iranian American in elected office. Raised in Bellevue, Washington, Habib attended Columbia University as a Truman Scholar, Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, and Yale Law School, where he was editor of the law review.
“I am honored and excited,” said the Iranian American Senator, discussing his new position in the DNC Platform Committee.
The committee is responsible for drafting a proposed National Platform, which is an official statement of the party’s position, for approval at the Democratic National Convention. This is a tradition that has been in practice since the Democratic Party adopted the first-ever National Platform in 1840. The recommendation report submitted by the DNC Platform Committee will be voted on by the delegates to the Convention this fall.
Co-chairs of the 2016 committee will be Connecticut Governor Dannel Mallow and Shirley Franklin. Habib said that other members include SEIU President Mary Kay Henry, NARAL Pro-Choice America president Ilyse Hogue, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, and singer-songwriter and political activist Carole King.