Muslim immigrant announces lieutenant governor run in front of LA ICE office

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Dr. Asif Mahmood aims to be the first Muslim American elected to statewide office in California.

"I am a proud Muslim and I love America," Mahmood told a crowd of cheering supporters Wednesday.

In the way of campaign promises, Mahmood didn't mince words.

"California must be the leader of the Trump resistance," Mahmood said, "And I will fight him every step of the way."

Current California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom is running for governor, clearing the way for Mahmood to potentially make history in 2019.

Dr. Mahmood believes his life story uniquely qualifies him for the office of lieutenant governor. "I am a Muslim. I am a Californian, and I am an immigrant. I'll be a triple threat to Donald Trump for this."

Mahmood grew up in Pakistan, eventually leaving his rural village to pursue a medicine in America. He met his wife at a medical school in Kentucky. They've raised their three children in Southern California.

Mahmood says his years as a physician in Pasadena have convinced him that changes are needed in the health insurance industry.

"I am for Medicare for all," Mahmood said. "I want every Californian to get health care."

But Mahmood says his primary campaign message is even more universal: "Get tough on hate."
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