Ilhan Omar called 'anti-Semitic' for tweet criticizing pro-Israel lobby

Ilhan Omar called 'anti-Semitic' for tweet criticizing pro-Israel lobby

Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn, reportedly retweeted then deleted a Twitter post that accused her of anti-Semitism after she was called out from both sides of the aisle for tweeting that the USA relationship with Israel is "all about the Benjamins, baby".

Omar's tweet implied that McCarthy was only calling for punishment against her and fellow Democratic House member Rashida Tlaib because of financial support from the pro-Israel lobby.

"Congresswoman Omar's use of anti-Semitic tropes and prejudicial accusations about Israel's supporters is deeply offensive", Democratic leaders said in a statement signed by Speaker Nancy Pelosi (CA), Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (MD), Majority Whip James Clyburn (SC), Assistant Speaker Ben Ray Luján (NM), Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries (NY) and Caucus Vice Chair Katherine Clark (MA).

Omar made no apologies Sunday night, but she did accept an invitation from Chelsea Clinton, one of her critics, to talk about anti-Semitism. Omar wrote, "It's all about the Benjamins baby". The organization linked to a 2018 Gallup poll finding that 64 percent of Americans sympathize with the Israelis over the Palestinians, saying, "American politicians are pro-Israel because Americans are".

However, it is one of countless special interest groups in Washington DC that advocate on issues covering everything from abortion to gun control, unions, energy, defence, healthcare and beyond. The lawmaker defended herself last month after accusing Israel of "taking evil actions and hypnotizing the world" in 2012 instead of apologizing.

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She said she had not been aware of the historical context.

Omar received both mild and serious backlash for her posts. "Congresswoman Omar's comments are deeply hurtful to Jews, including myself", he wrote. Omar raised over $1 million for her freshman campaign a year ago, including from unions and from Emily's List, a group that seeks increased participation by women in politics.

Elaine Luria of Virginia and Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey on Monday published a letter urging House leaders to "unite against anti-Semitism and hateful tropes and stereotypes".

Democratic Congressman Ted Deutch also denounced Omar's tweet, saying "the use of stereotypes and offensive rhetoric by Members of Congress, whether anti-Semitic or racist, must come to an end", adding, "they should never be a part of any conversation about the policies of Congress".

"We should expect all elected officials, regardless of party, and all public figures to not traffic in anti-Semitism", Clinton said.

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