Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (CA) and others gave a joint comment criticizing statements from Democrat Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (MN) that compared the U.S. and Israel with terrorist organizations such as the Taliban and Hamas.
“Legitimate criticism of the actions of the U.S. and Israel is protected by free speech and free debate. And of course, such criticism is vital to both our democracies,” said Pelosi with Democrat Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (MD), Democrat Majority Whip James Clyburn (SC), along with Democrats Katherine Clark (MA), Hakeem Jeffries (NY), and Pete Aguilar (CA).
“But creating false equivalencies between the U.S. and Israel with groups that conduct terrorism like the Taliban and Hamas creates prejudice and harms progress toward a peaceful future with security for everyone.”
“We welcome a clarification by Rep. Omar,” The House Democratic leaders said.
Pelosi’s comment comes hours after Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA) said Rep. Omar’s remarks “abhorrent” and stated the Speaker’s “continued failure to solve the issues within her caucus sends the signal to the world that Democrats are ok with anti-Semitism and sympathize with terrorists.”
Rep. Omar's anti-Semitic & anti-American comments are abhorrent.
Speaker Pelosi’s continued failure to address the issues in her caucus sends a message to the world that Democrats are tolerant of anti-Semitism and sympathizing with terrorists.
It’s time for the Speaker to act.
— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) June 10, 2021
The fact that the leadership of the Democrats in the House went for Omar for her criticism is a change from the previous time she used anti-Semitic rhetoric. A 2019 measure condemning anti-Semitism came after other statements by Omar and ended up getting watered down into simply an expression of “anti-hate” that did not teach Omar the lesson she deserved.
Author: Blake Ambrose