Freshman Democratic Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar has drawn a lot of attention over remarks — accusing Americans who support Israel of holding dual loyalties and suggesting that they only do so for money — that appear to be anti-Semitic in nature.
But just a few years ago, Cruz, who has been critical of Omar’s comments, found himself on the receiving end of similar accusations. (RELATED: What’s Happening Is ‘Really Scary’: Meghan McCain Breaks Down Over Omar Comments)
Fox News correspondent Geraldo Rivera told Bill O’Reilly, “Aside from the stinking anti-Semitic implications that I see in that whole ‘New York values’ money- and media-coated message that he put out there, pandering to those Iowa voters, he also voted against Hurricane Sandy relief. He also voted against compensation for 9/11 victims. This is a man whose interests are absolutely antithetical to New York.”
CNN’s Jeffrey Toobin also felt like the comments had an anti-Semitic tone.
“He said New York values are about money and they’re about the media. That’s an anti-Semitic trope from a hundred years. It’s been around for a very long time,” Toobin told anchor Wolf Blitzer.
Blitzer argued that Cruz appeared to be talking about liberals in general, and Toobin fired right back. “Money and media is Jews,” he insisted. “I mean this is just an old-fashioned, anti-Semitic stereotype, derogatory term and everybody understands it.”
Cruz explained the comments during an interview with CNN’s Dana Bash, saying that he had been referring to liberals. “Everyone in New York and outside of New York knows exactly what I meant by that,” he said. “And it is the liberal values of Democratic politicians who have been hammering the people of New York for decades.”