Jean-Pierre Says Booting Ilhan Omar From Key Committee Is A ‘Political Stunt’

[Screenshot/Rumble/White House press briefing]

Nicole Silverio Media Reporter
Font Size:

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the removal of Democratic Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar from the House Foreign Affairs Committee is a House Republican “political stunt.”

The House of Representatives voted Thursday to remove Omar from the committee at the behest of House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, who called the action payback for the previous removals of Republican Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia and Paul Gosar of Arizona from committees.

“What we believe is that Congresswoman Omar is a highly respected member of Congress, she has apologized for her comments she made in the past, she most recently did an extensive interview about this on Sunday — I believe on CNN — and she’s been vocal about condemning anti-Semitism as well as affirming our strong alliance and partnership with Israel. Look, the way we see this, it’s a political stunt much like House Republicans’ unjust removal of other leading Democrats from key committees in recent weeks and it is a disservice to the American people,” Jean-Pierre said at Thursday’s White House press briefing.

Omar came under fire in 2019 for suggesting that American Jews advocate for “allegiance to a foreign country” and that American support for Israel is purchased. House Democrats released a resolution condemning anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry.

The newly released resolution said Omar’s comments dishonored the House of Representatives and “disqualified [her] from serving on the Committee on Foreign Affairs.”

Omar vowed to speak for families facing injustice around the world following her removal.

“I will continue to speak for the families who are seeking justice around the world — whether they are displaced in refugee camps or hiding under their bed somewhere like I was. I didn’t come to Congress to be silent. I came to Congress to be their voice,” she said.

Four Republicans — Nancy Mace of South Carolina, Ken Buck of Colorado, Victoria Spartz of Indiana, and Matt Gaetz of Florida — asserted it would be hypocritical to remove Omar given that Gosar and Greene have remained on the committees, though they voted in favor of her removal. (RELATED: Reps. Adam Schiff, Eric Swalwell, Ilhan Omar To Officially Be Kicked Off Intelligence, Foreign Affairs Committee) 

McCarthy also removed Democratic California Reps. Eric Swalwell and Adam Schiff from the House Intelligence Committee over concerns that they posed a national security threat. Swalwell had close ties with Chinese spy Christine Fang, also known as “Fang Fang,” who worked on his 2014 re-election campaign and as an intern in his congressional office.

The speaker said he removed Schiff from the committee for allegedly lying about the now-discredited Steele dossier, a document compiled by former MI6 agent Christopher Steele alleging that former President Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign colluded with Russia.