A Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate held a news conference Monday to denounce derogatory comments on social media, many of which target her Islamic faith.

Deedra Abboud, 45, a Phoenix attorney and community activist, spoke to a crowd of about 30 supporters and the media to denounce the "loud and proud" but "small" minority of people whom she said only seek to divide the public.

The comments, which she described as "fresh-ground Islamophobia," overgeneralize a diverse group of people, she said.

"In America, we understand that some of our neighbors are Christian conservatives. Some are liberal Christians," she said.

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