Democrats are doing damage control for one of their own representatives, but the leader of the liberal party just offered one of the most bizarre defenses ever: Rep. Ilhan Omar doesn’t know what words mean.
Omar has come under fire from both Republicans and Democrats after making a series of statements which have been widely criticized as anti-Semitic. The situation is even more inflamed because the Minnesota lawmaker — one of only two Muslims in Congress — also sits on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
The congresswoman has previously implied that Israel is “evil” before also repeating anti-Jewish stereotypes on social media. That led many Democrats and a vast majority of the House to officially scold her, although the condemnation didn’t call Omar out by name.
“The 407-23 vote caps a tumultuous week for Democratic leadership as they tried to contain the fallout over Omar’s latest provocative comments,” reported The Guardian on Friday.
But now Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi seems to be trying to have it both ways. Also on Friday, the Democrat leader offered a strange and weak excuse for Omar’s apparent anti-Jewish views.
“The incident that happened with (Omar), I don’t think our colleague is anti-Semitic,” Pelosi declared, according to The Hill.
“I think she has a different experience in the use of words, doesn’t understand that some of them are fraught with meaning,” the speaker continued.
“The incident that happened with, I don’t think our colleague is anti-Semitic, I think she has a different experience in the use of words, doesn’t understand that some of them are fraught with meaning, that she, what, didn’t realize.” – @speakerpelosi on @ilhan
This is unreal pic.twitter.com/Qh0xVzpzlz
— Cameron Gray (@Cameron_Gray) March 8, 2019
Wait, what? So Democrats are now defending a member of Congress, who sits on an important affairs committee, by claiming that she “doesn’t understand” that words have meaning?
That comment would at least have made some sense if Omar were a fresh immigrant struggling to learn English. But the Somali-born lawmaker has lived in the United States for some 24 years, making Pelosi’s excuse both eyebrow-raising and questionable.
Congresspeople have to use words to write laws. If you don’t understand that words are fraught with meaning, how are you qualified to be a member of Congress?
— Ron Wikso (@ronwikso) March 8, 2019
While Pelosi and other Democrats are running coverage for Omar and her comments, their patience may also be running out. She recently committed a cardinal sin among liberals by slamming Barack Obama, even implying that he was a murderer.
“We can’t be only upset with Trump. … His policies are bad, but many of the people who came before him also had really bad policies. They just were more polished than he was,” Omar said, talking about Obama and also referencing the drone strikes he ordered while president.
“We don’t want anybody to get away with murder because they are polished,” she continued, still talking about Obama. “We want to recognize the actual policies that are behind the pretty face and the smile.”
Will Pelosi and other Democrats just laugh nervously and again claim Omar doesn’t understand words, or will they reach a breaking point?
One thing is clear: Rep. Omar is rapidly running out of allies. She may have won her immigrant-heavy district in Minnesota, but she is still a low-ranking congresswoman who has so far angered Jews, conservatives, her own Democrat party, and now likely Barack Obama’s inner circle.
The best move for Pelosi may be to clearly disown Omar and call her out, instead of making poor excuses for her. That would at least show a hint of backbone … but that’s also why it probably will never happen.
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