Self-Described “Black, Queer, Muslim” Candidate Hopes to Make History in Oklahoma

Self-Described “Black, Queer, Muslim” Candidate Hopes to Make History in Oklahoma

Mauree Turner, a self-descried “black, queer, muslim” candidate hopes to make history in Oklahoma by becoming the states first muslim lawmaker.

Turner is running for state House in Oklahoma’s 88th district. She won the democratic primary, defeating incumbent Jason Dunnington in June. She will face Republican Kelly Barlean in the general election on November 3, 2020.

According to reports:

Turner’s progressive platform is centered around criminal justice reform, expanding access to affordable health care and pushing for a higher minimum wage. 

Turner was raised in a single-parent household. Her mother worked up to three jobs and her father was incarcerated for years, giving Turner firsthand experience of what it’s like to struggle to make ends meet and to be affected by “a carceral system built on revenge rather than rehabilitation,” as she put it. 

Turner, who now wears hijab, grew up in a multifaith household. She sang in a Baptist choir, since her mother is Baptist, and learned from her father’s Islamic faith after he converted while in prison.

She worked as a community organizer for the Council on American-Islamic Relations while attending Oklahoma State University, and later became a field director for the American Civil Liberties Union’s criminal justice reform project, Campaign for Smart Justice.

Turner is endorsed by Rep. Ilhan Omar.