shahid shafi muslim republican texas intv vpx_00000000.jpg
shahid shafi muslim republican texas intv vpx_00000000.jpg
Now playing
02:44
Muslim GOP official: I've always felt welcome
CNN
Now playing
02:42
'This is insane': GOP Arizona county official slams election 'audit'
FLINT, MI - OCTOBER 31: Former U.S. President Barack Obama speaks during a drive-in campaign rally for Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden at Northwestern High School on October 31, 2020 in Flint, Michigan. Biden is campaigning with former President Obama on Saturday in Michigan, a battleground state that President Donald Trump narrowly won in 2016. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Drew Angerer/Getty Images North America/Getty Images
FLINT, MI - OCTOBER 31: Former U.S. President Barack Obama speaks during a drive-in campaign rally for Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden at Northwestern High School on October 31, 2020 in Flint, Michigan. Biden is campaigning with former President Obama on Saturday in Michigan, a battleground state that President Donald Trump narrowly won in 2016. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Now playing
00:54
Obama slams GOP's opposition to voting reform
CNN
Now playing
02:39
NY candidate says he's joining forces with his opponent. Here's why
Now playing
03:36
They stood up to Trump's lies and now are losing their jobs
Now playing
02:34
Schumer on infrastructure talks: We need big, bold change
CNN
Now playing
03:14
This family's lives will be changed by the child tax credit
CNN
Now playing
02:46
Toobin on Supreme Court ruling: I was struck by Kavanaugh's opinion
Getty Images
Now playing
02:47
Enten: Straw poll of GOP activists rates DeSantis over Trump
jake sullivan russia sanctions bash sotu vpx_00000000.png
jake sullivan russia sanctions bash sotu vpx_00000000.png
Now playing
01:48
Sullivan: US preparing more Russia sanctions over Navalny poisoning
cnn/getty images
Now playing
01:55
Sanders won't say if he'll support Manchin's voting rights compromise
President Joe Biden speaks about reaching 300 million COVID-19 vaccination shots, in the State Dining Room of the White House, Friday, June 18, 2021, in Washington.
Evan Vucci/AP
President Joe Biden speaks about reaching 300 million COVID-19 vaccination shots, in the State Dining Room of the White House, Friday, June 18, 2021, in Washington.
Now playing
01:31
'A private matter': Biden on US Catholic bishops' potential rebuke
Critical Race Theory
KSDK
Critical Race Theory
Now playing
04:39
Mom gets emotional during heated forum on critical race theory
FILE - This June 8, 2021 file photo shows the Supreme Court building in Washington. A Thursday, June 17, 2021 Supreme Court ruling that favored Catholic Social Services in Philadelphia was far from the constitutional gale wind that would have reshaped how courts interpret religious liberty under the First Amendment. Governmental entities are now on notice that if they want to ban discrimination against LGBTQ persons or anyone else, they had better not allow for any exceptions -- or else religious groups will have the right to ask for them, and they'll have a strong case for getting them. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
J. Scott Applewhite/AP
FILE - This June 8, 2021 file photo shows the Supreme Court building in Washington. A Thursday, June 17, 2021 Supreme Court ruling that favored Catholic Social Services in Philadelphia was far from the constitutional gale wind that would have reshaped how courts interpret religious liberty under the First Amendment. Governmental entities are now on notice that if they want to ban discrimination against LGBTQ persons or anyone else, they had better not allow for any exceptions -- or else religious groups will have the right to ask for them, and they'll have a strong case for getting them. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Now playing
03:32
Obamacare has survived over 2,000 attempts to kill it
mike pence heckled at conservative conference vpx _00000918.png
CNN
mike pence heckled at conservative conference vpx _00000918.png
Now playing
02:21
Mike Pence heckled at conservative conference
This Morning
Now playing
03:22
Ted Cruz: Critical race theory is as racist as Klansmen
CNN —  

A bid to remove a Texas county GOP leader from his post because he is Muslim has been rejected.

The Tarrant County Republican Party voted on Thursday to keep Dr. Shahid Shafi in his post as vice chairman, according to the Star-Telegram.

In a video posted on the Star-Telegram’s website, Mike Snyder of the Tarrant County Republican Party announced, “the vote total was 139 to support Dr. Shafi and only 49 to reject him.”

Snyder went on to say, “tonight’s vote demonstrates the majority of Republicans in Tarrant County stands with Dr. Shahid Shafi. And on the firm foundation of religious freedom memorialized in the Declaration of Independence.”

Following the vote, Shafi said, “our union is a little more perfect today. And it’s time for us to put those divisions to rest.”

CNN has reached out to the Tarrant County Republican Party to independently confirm.

In the weeks leading up to the proposal to remove Shafi, Republicans on the county, state and national level, rallied around the vice chairman.

Shafi was appointed in July. His ratification received near unanimous support from the group’s executive committee.

The lone dissenter, however, created a small group that brought forth a motion to oust Shafi, Jeremy Bradford, executive director of the Tarrant County GOP, told CNN. Tarrant County includes the city of Forth Worth.

Sources within the party say the dissenter is Dorrie O’Brien, who has been outspoken on Facebook about her concerns about Shafi’s religion.

“We don’t think he’s suitable as a practicing Muslim to be vice chair because he’d be the representative for ALL Republicans in Tarrant County, and not ALL Republicans in Tarrant County think Islam is safe or acceptable in the U.S., in Tarrant County, and in the TCGOP, and there are big questions surrounding exactly where Dr. Shafi’s loyalties lie, vis a vis Democrat and Republican policies,” O’Brien said on Facebook.

CNN reached out to O’Brien, but she declined to comment.

GOP chairman: ‘I’m standing by him’

Tarrant County GOP Chairman Darl Easton said he appointed Shafi to the position after observing his work on an outreach committee and a campaign committee.

“When it came time to appoint vice chairs, it was kind of an automatic choice,” Easton said.

Easton says that while religion is a vital factor to some members of the party, it is not to him.

“I’m standing by him,” Easton said. “I have no doubt what his allegiance is to, he’s not a radical jihadist or terrorist. I think he’s more dedicated to the party than many of the ones who are asking for his resignation.”

Shafi, a father, trauma surgeon, US citizen, and immigrant from India, said the group calling for his ouster is working against America’s values and the Republican party.

“What we cannot do, and we don’t do, is discriminate against a specific person based on their religion, caste, creed, color, ethnicity or country of origin. Our party has very specific rules that prohibit religious discrimination. Our country has specific rules and our constitution prohibits it,” Shafi told CNN in December. “So when this controversy arose because of a small number of people at the fringes of our party, it’s been really very – they’re doing a disservice to our party.”

Support for Shafi within the Republican party has been widespread.

“Religious freedom is at the core of who we are as a nation and state,” Texas Governor Greg Abbott said in a statement, according to the Dallas Morning News. “And attacks on Dr. Shafi because of his faith are contrary to this guiding principle.”

Senator Ted Cruz tweeted his support in December.

“Discrimination against Dr. Shafi b/c he’s Muslim is wrong. The Constitution prohibits any religious test for public office & the First Amendment protects religious liberty for every faith, The Party of Lincoln should welcome everybody and celebrate liberty.”

George P. Bush, grandson of George H.W. Bush and Commissioner of the Texas General Land Office, encouraged people to vote to keep Shafi.

“I again urge my friends in the Tarrant County Republican Party to do the right thing and vote to support Shahid Shafi as vice chairman of the party. Religious litmus tests are wrong—whether they occur in my party or whether its Democratic Senators who have questioned Catholic judges’ ability to be unbiased. What matters is a person’s character, judgment and values. Shahid Shafi has all three.”

In an open letter, Shafi said he was confident in the Tarrant County GOP’s “fundamental sense of fairness” and called on those in doubt to “build trust by breaking bread with our neighbors who don’t look like us or talk with an accent.”

“A nation divided by hate and fear makes us weaker, and our enemies stronger,” he wrote. “It is through inclusion, and not exclusion, that we will be able to build strong communities, where neighbors trust and protect each other, and our enemies cannot find refuge.”