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Launched in 2014 by journalist Sean Baker, Med City Beat is an independent news source covering government, business and culture in Rochester, Minnesota.

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Mustafa announces bid for Congress

Mustafa announces bid for Congress

Community activist Regina Mustafa is running for Congress.

Mustafa announced Monday that she is entering the 2018 race for the 1st Congressional District. Already, five other Democrats and one Republican — 2016 runner-up Jim Hagedorn — have announced bids for the seat. The position is being vacated by Rep. Tim Walz, who is running for Minnesota governor in 2018.

Mustafa is the founder of Community Interfaith Dialogue on Islam. She frequently hosts panel discussions on religion at the library and has become a de facto spokesperson for Rochester's Muslim community. Mustafa's civic engagement, which also includes a position on the Olmsted County Human Rights Commission, earned her the coveted Mayor's Award in 2016.

Asked in an interview Monday what makes her the best person for the job, the 37-year-old Philadelphia native pointed to her interfaith work, as well as her advocacy for other issues including affordable housing and equity in education.

"I am blessed to live southern Minnesota, from the beauty of small-town communities as well as its rich diverse cultures and traditions," said Mustafa. "But yet we live in a divided political climate and its time we had a voice locally and in Washington to bridge divides and bring people to the table."

A campaign kick-off event is scheduled for Thursday, 6 p.m., at the Jive Mill in Rochester.

Cover photo: Mustafa / Submitted

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