By Nick Gillespie
From the invaluable campaign reporting of Yahoo's Chris Moody comes this tale of Republican triumph for Ron Paul. Even though his campaign is not doing any specific outreach on this score, Muslim Americans and Arab Americans are saying yes to Dr. No:
"[Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum have] come out against practically every position that the Arabs in the community support," said Nasser Beydoun, the former head of American Arab Chamber of Commerce in Dearborn. "I don't think Republicans are focused on immigrants in general or Arab Americans. They're too busy catering to the fringes of the party."
Yahya Basha, a medical doctor in Royal Oak, Mich., and a board member of the American Arab Chamber of Commerce, told Yahoo News he was frustrated with the lack of outreach from the presidential campaigns, and although he is committed to supporting former Mitt Romney, he expects a sizable number of his fellow Muslim and Arab Republicans in Michigan to cast a vote for Paul on Tuesday.
"As a group, we like Ron Paul," he said.
Moody charts the decline in warm relations between Muslims and the Party of Lincoln:
...76 percent of [Muslims] approve of President Barack Obama's job performance, according to an August 2011 Pew survey. Almost half of the Muslims surveyed in the poll said they found Republicans to be "unfriendly" to the faith.
The relationship between followers of Islam and the Republican Party was not always so contentious. In the 2000 presidential election, before the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and the civil liberties crackdown and wars that followed, 7 in 10 Muslims supported the candidacy of former President George W. Bush, according to a poll at the time taken by the Council on American-Islamic Relations....
"One side may be disappointing," [James Zogby of the American Arab Institute] said, "but the other side is scaring the hell out of you."