ADL and Emgage Action Letter to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson Regarding Ken Isaacs

February 12, 2018

In a joint letter to Secretary of State Tillerson, ADL and Emgage Action urged the administration to withdraw Ken Isaacs' nomination to be Director General of the International Organization for Migration.

February 12, 2018

The Honorable Rex Tillerson
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street NW
Washington, DC 20520

Dear Mr. Secretary,

On behalf of our two organizations, we write to express deep concern about the nomination of Ken Isaacs to serve as Director General of the United Nations International Organization for Migration (IOM) and, for the reasons set out below, urge that his nomination be withdrawn by the administration.

The men and women who represent our great nation in New York and abroad should exemplify the best of America. In our opinion, Mr. Isaacs’ inflammatory and inaccurate interpretation of Islam disqualify him from such a leadership position.

In June 2017, when a local Christian preacher told CNN that a recent terrorist attack in London “isn’t what the Muslim faith asks people to do,” Mr. Isaacs responded on social media “if you read the Quran you will know ‘this’ is exactly what the Muslim faith instructs the faithful to do.” These comments mischaracterize Islam and demonize its adherents.

In another post, Mr. Isaacs reportedly stated that “[i]f Islam is a religion of peace, let’s see 2 million Muslims in National Mall marching against jihad & stand for America! I haven’t seen it!” This kind of rhetoric is disturbing and demonstrates a clear bias against the adherents of one religion, even though the Director General is supposed to combat xenophobia and protect the welfare of all refugees irrespective of their religion or race.

Mr. Isaacs has demonstrated bias against a major world religion that is followed by millions of Americans. As a proposed representative of our government, he is supposed to represent all of us. His inflammatory, Islamophobic posts exhibit an inability to do that.

We therefore urge the administration to withdraw Ken Isaacs’ nomination to be Director General of the International Organization for Migration.


Emgage Action

Anti-Defamation  League