- Democrats are moving a vote on a resolution condemning anti-Semitism after criticism from key groups.
- The resolution vote will be moved from Wednesday to Thursday and will also include new language condemning anti-Muslim bias as well.
House Democratic leaders are bumping a vote on a resolution that condemns anti-Semitism in order to add language combatting anti-Muslim bias as well.
The decision comes after several lawmakers and prominent groups pushed back on what they believe is targeting freshman Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar, who is under fire once again for remarks about supporters of Israel.
Senior Democrats had initially moved swiftly to condemn Omar’s comments in a resolution – which does not specifically mention her by name – to be voted on Wednesday. But lawmakers paused to move the vote to Thursday and, according to a Democratic aide, the text will be beefed up to include condemnation of anti-Muslim bias.
“So for me, I want to talk about the political influence in this country that says it is ok to push for allegiance to a foreign country,” Omar said.
Democratic and Republican leaders condemned Omar’s comments, as they have done before when she has made other remarks also perceived as anti-Semitic.
While senior Democrats then crafted a resolution citing the comments, but not mentioning Omar directly, several prominent Democrats outside of leadership and progressive groups questioned the reasoning behind the resolution.
Freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said not enough has been done to combat other forms of prejudice on Capitol Hill.
“It’s not my position to tell people how to feel, or that their hurt is invalid,” she wrote on Twitter. “But incidents like these do beg the question: where are the resolutions against homophobic statements? For anti-blackness? For xenophobia? For a member saying he’ll ‘send Obama home to Kenya?'”
Ocasio-Cortez also suggested that increasing funding for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was on the same level as “implied tropes.”
“If we’re so concerned about implied tropes, why aren’t we concerned about this one?” she tweeted. “Where was the concern last week when 26 Dems voted for a GOP amendment to expand ICE powers rooted in the racist + false trope that Latino immigrants are more dangerous than US born citizens?”
In addition to young progressive members, the Congressional Black Caucus will discuss the resolution, a new version of which has not yet been made public.
Omar apologised in February for comments that were similar to anti-Semitic tropes, which drew condemnation from Republicans and Democrats alike.
Republicans have been vocal about the issue, demanding that Democratic leaders remove Omar from her post on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
“Where does that come from? It’s a deep-rooted belief that shows the core of her convictions,” House Minority Whip Steve Scalise said during an interview on Fox News. “Everybody is entitled to their own beliefs, but why would you have her on a committee that sensitive to our foreign policy if she has those kinds of anti-Semitic beliefs unless you are willing to tolerate it? It shouldn’t be tolerated. She ought to be removed immediately from the Foreign Affairs Committee.”
President Donald Trump has also said Omar should resign over following a previous incident in which the freshman representative was accused of using anti-Semitic tropes.
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