Biden to visit Michigan as Arab American anger over Gaza grows - GulfToday

Biden to visit Michigan as Arab American anger over Gaza grows


President Joe Biden arrives at Miami International Airport in Miami. File/AP

US President Joe Biden travels Thursday to the crucial swing state of Michigan, which is also the crucible of growing Arab American anger at his pro-Israel policies.

The trip comes days after the Democratic incumbent's campaign manager traveled to the city of Dearborn — home to the largest concentration of Arab Americans in the United States — only to be snubbed by the Detroit suburb's mayor.

It was an ominous sign for Biden, for whom swing states such as Michigan could prove crucial in November, when he faces a likely rematch with his predecessor Donald Trump.

The White House has made clear that Thursday's trip is purely a campaign visit, and Biden's 2024 team has said that he will meet with members of the powerful United Auto Workers (UAW) union in the Detroit area, who endorsed him last week.

That could carry a lot of weight in Michigan, home to the US auto industry -- but he will still have to contend with the anger of Arab Americans as Israel's devastating war in Gaza grinds on.

Biden has asked Congress for billions of dollars in additional military aid to Israel and his government has vetoed multiple UN Security Council calls for a ceasefire in the conflict, leaving many Muslims and people of Middle Eastern heritage feeling betrayed by the Democratic Party, normally their political home.

They accuse the 81-year-old Democrat of sacrificing civilians in Gaza, which is facing a serious humanitarian crisis, in the name of supporting Israel.

White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre said Wednesday that Biden was "heartbroken by the suffering of innocent Palestinians."

Agence France-Presse

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