Fourth storm on Capitol Hill over controversial comments by Rep. Ilhan Omar – who have been widely criticized as anti-Semitic – spread to the 2020 campaign track, with several high-profile democratic presidential competitors defending the refreshing Congresswoman from Michigan.
Omar, a Somali-American and one of two Muslim women in Congress, resumed the flames last week when she again suggested that groups supporting Israel push members of Congress to "have faith in a foreign country."
Critics on both sides of the time said the comments fed the stereotype that American Jews have "double loyalty" to the US and Israel. But the housekeeper Nancy Pelosi faces a rebellion in the causus when the management made a decision condemning anti-Semitism, and has since offered a measure that more widely condemns all forms of bigotry.
The fight exposed deep divisions in the party. But on the 2020 campaign track, heavyweights came to Omar's side. Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders from Vermontwho makes his second straight bid for the democratic presidential election, said in a statement that "anti-Semitism is a hateful and dangerous ideology that must be strongly opposed in the United States and around the world."
But Sanders, who was raised Jewish, defended Omar and argued that "we must not, however, equate anti-Semitism with legitimate criticism of the right-wing Netanyahu government in Israel. Rather, we must develop an even-handed Middle East policy bringing Israelis and Palestinians together. for a lasting peace. "
"What I fear in Parliament now is an attempt to target Congresswoman Omar as a way of pursuing that debate," the Senator added. "It is wrong."
Late. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, who, as Sanders, runs a progressive and populist campaign for the White House, also beat anti-Semitism, but defended Omar.
"We have a moral duty to fight hatred ideologies in our own country and around the world – and that includes both anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. In a democracy, we can and should have an open and respectful Middle East policy-focused debate" , the democratic presidential candidate wrote in a statement obtained by Fox News.
"Burning criticism of Israel as automatic anti-Semitic has a chilling effect on our public discourse and makes it harder to achieve a peaceful solution between Israelis and Palestinians," she added.
Many democrats, while strong supporters of Israel, have concerns with the country's long-term president, Benjamin Netanyahu, and his government's treatment of Palestinians. The conservative leader has a close relationship with Republican President Trump.
Highlighting a new FBI investigation into a possible murder threat to Omar, Warren added, "Threats to violence – like those done to Rep. Omar – are never acceptable".
There was a similar answer from Sen. Kamala Harris of California, another leading candidate for the democratic nomination, who called all cases of bigotry and worried about possible violence directed at Omar.
She called in a Fox News statement that "we all have a responsibility to speak against anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, homophobia, transphobia, racism and all forms of hatred and bigotry, especially as we see an increase in hate crimes in America."
"You can both support Israel and be loyal to our country," she added. "I also believe there is a difference in criticism of politics or political leaders and anti-Semitism. At the end of the day, we need a two-state solution and a commitment to peace, human rights and democracy by all leaders in the region – and a commitment from our country to contribute to it. "
Harris pointed out that "like some of my colleagues in Congressional Black Caucus, I'm worried that the spotlight will be put on Congresswoman Omar, may put her at risk."
Meanwhile, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., More critical for Omar in response to the controversy while accusing GOP of "hypocrisy".
She said in a statement to Fox News: "Speaking that fuels hate and prejudice have no place in public discourse, whether targeted at Jews, Muslims, African Americans or other Americans. Those with critical views of Israel, as congressman Omar , should be able to express their views without using anti-Semitic troops for money or influence, just as the critical of Congressman Omar should not use Islamophobic language and imagery that promotes violence, as we saw in West Virginia.
"We must also call the Republican Party's hypocrisy in this case. Many Republicans have violated congressman Omar's remarks and condemned her in the harshest terms, but said little or nothing when President Trump defended white supremacists in Charlottesville or when leader McCarthy promoted a conspiracy of Jewish donors who buy choices. "
Fox News reached the presidential campaign of Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey, Sen. Amy Klobuchar from Minnesota, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii, and former Rep. John Delaney from Maryland for comment but has not yet received a reply.
Last month, Omar was criticized for suggesting in tweets that the powerful lobbying of US Israeli public affairs effectively bought US politicians and said it was "all about Benjamin's baby".
She later apologized for claims from Pelosi.