Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., left, joined at right by Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., listens to President Donald Trump’s State of the Union speech, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Does anyone recall Rep. Ilhan Omar’s exchange with Elliott Abrams, the U.S. Special Envoy to Venezuela, during a February hearing before the House Foreign Affairs Committee? It was difficult to forget. Just one month into her term, and Omar was on the power trip of her life.
During the questioning, Abrams tried to explain his answers and Omar repeatedly cut him off, with a sharp, “Yes or no.”
“Yes or no. Do you think that massacre was a fabulous achievement that happened under our watch?,” she asked Abrams.
“That is a ridiculous question, and — no!,” Abrams answered.
“I will take that as a yes,” Omar said.
(The clip can be watched in the video below. The relevant portion begins at 2:10.)
It was with this same sense of moral superiority that she answered Ani Zonneveld, president of Muslims for Progressive Values when she had the temerity to ask Omar, “Will you be able to make a statement against FGM? Because that’s an issue in Detroit, and it would be really powerful if the two Muslim Congresswomen, yourself and Rashida, would make a statement on this issue.”
Omar said it was “an appalling question.” She then delivered a sarcastic, two minute lecture to this woman, never answering the question (the clip appears in the tweet below). Here is a portion of her answer.
Should I make a schedule? Like, does this need to be on repeat every 5 minutes? Should I be like, ‘so, today I forgot to condemn Al-Qaeda, so here’s the Al-Qaeda one. Today I forgot to condemn FGM so here it goes. Today I forgot to condemn Hamas so here it goes.’ It is a very frustrating question that comes up.”
And so, I think really I am quite disgusted, to be honest, that as Muslim legislators, we are constantly being asked to waste our time speaking to issues that other people are not asked to speak to because the assumption exists that we somehow support [it].
Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) explodes at an audience member who asked her if she could condemn female genital mutilation
Omar responds by saying the question is "appalling" and she is "disgusted" to be asked if she condemns "al-Qaeda," "FGM," and "Hamas," saying it's a "waste" of time pic.twitter.com/9Ipl55wig9
— Molly Prince (@mollyfprince) July 23, 2019
The questioner should have cut her off abruptly and snapped, “Yes or no, Ms. Omar.”
Here are a few reactions to Omar’s answer from Twitter users (via Twitchy):
She spent two minutes condemning questions she doesn’t like, so clearly she has no problem condemning things. It’s what she repeatedly refuses to condemn that’s troubling.
So she still won’t condemn those things? Got it.
It’s a yes or no question. Why is that a waste of time?
If she would just answer, people would quit asking.
The thing she vehemently condemns is being held accountable. SMH
Evade, evade, evade. Nicely done, Ilhan. Interesting that I can still never find any video evidence of you denouncing Hamas, Al Qaeda or the Muslim Brotherhood.
Is “yes I condemn them” so hard to say?
All she had to do is say yes. Instead she belittles the person who asked the question then continues to lecture the audience on priorities. She is not much of a politician. How did she ever get elected?
Seems like it would have taken less time to just condemn these things than to give this explanation and she’d never have to do it again. Makes you wonder why she just doesn’t come out against it, doesn’t it?
Noticed that she never answered the question. Speaking around the question is not the same as an answer.
Just answer the question!
I guess my question is this…Has she EVER condemned any of those things? Ever? Perhaps if she did then folks would stop asking her to condemn them.
She can condemn a question but not FGM. Interesting.
Instead of rambling on for 3 minutes, @IlhanMN could have simply said, “yes I’m against female genital mutilation.” Period. 3 seconds.
Conservatives are asked to condemn things all the time. Turnabout is fair play.
So let me get this straight. Every white politician has to denounce white supremacy just because they’re white even though they have nothing to do with it. But Omar is trying to make the argument that because she a Muslim she’s shouldn’t have to denounce terrorists or terrorism?
Triggered. All day. Everyday.
Regardless of who you support, facts is that she condemns POTUS and his actions all the time…..notice how she has no trouble taking a daily stand there…..that’s all you need to know……
So seriously, when Trump wins the popular vote and electoral college landslide, what will the Dems do?