Politicians and activists from across the political spectrum condemned Democratic Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar’s claim that Jewish lawmakers have not been “partners for justice.”
Omar refused to apologize for comparing the U.S. and Israel to Hamas and the Taliban when she appeared on CNN on Tuesday. Host Jake Tapper asked her if she understood why some of her fellow Democrats viewed her comments as anti-Semitic. She then accused the Jewish Democrats who described her comments as “offensive” and “misguided” of not being “equally engaging in seeking justice around the world.”
Omar also claimed that those colleagues “don’t… know what it feels like to experience injustice.” (RELATED: The Anatomy Of An Ilhan Omar Scandal: From ‘Some People Did Something’ To Comparing The US To Hamas)
Advocacy groups and members of Congress slammed her comments.
Anti-Defamation League (ADL) President and former Obama administration official Jonathan Greenblatt accused Omar of “blaming the victim.” Greenblatt previously told The Wall Street Journal that hate crimes against Jews were up 77% in May.
To accuse Jewish members of not being involved in “justice” is ignorant of their records, and especially offensive when it’s an effort to distract from your own #antisemitic statements. Rep. Omar needs to lead with accountability, not denial — definitely not blaming the victim. pic.twitter.com/qNtSmR41Vy
— Jonathan Greenblatt (@JGreenblattADL) June 30, 2021
Avi Mayer, the managing director of the American Jewish Committee, noted that Omar used “anti-Semitic tropes.”
“[Jewish members of Congress] haven’t been partners in justice. They haven’t been equally engaging in seeking justice around the world.”
Ilhan Omar responding to charges of past antisemitism by bringing new antisemitic tropes into the convo is quality TV.pic.twitter.com/3793nNBc8W
— Avi Mayer (@AviMayer) June 30, 2021
Congressional Republicans, including Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy called on Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi to strip Omar of her committee seats.
Why is Ilhan Omar still on the Foreign Affairs Committee?
Why is she on any committee? https://t.co/1nZHOKRtz9
— Tom Cotton (@TomCottonAR) June 30, 2021
Press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters at her Wednesday press conference that “any attempt to draw up an equivalency between the United States and our close ally Israel with terror groups like Hamas, or the Taliban is false and unacceptable.”
“It’s so sickening to watch what’s going on,” retired Democratic New York state Rep. Dov Hikind told the Daily Caller. “She’s laughing at everyone.”
Noting the increase in anti-Semitic hate crimes, Hikind explained that Omar’s comments “have repercussions. She creates hate.”
“Omar isn’t going to change,” he added. “She sees the reality that the leadership has no courage.”