On Saturday, I wrote about reports that House Democratic leaders were considering punishment options for the two Jewish ambassadors at the center of the controversy over Israel’s decision last Thursday to bar Democratic Reps. Rashida Tlaib (MI) and Ilhan Omar (MN) from their country on security grounds.
Israeli ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer and U.S ambassador to Israel David Friedman were said to be in line for “statements of no confidence” and Inspector General investigations, according to McClatchy:
About a dozen lawmakers, including senior Jewish members, began discussions on Friday morning over ways to communicate a “deep lack of confidence and trust” in Israel’s ambassador to Washington, Ron Dermer, and the U.S. ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, according to two sources familiar with the discussions.
The group is weighing issuing a statement of no confidence in Dermer and opening an inspector general investigation into Friedman’s conduct, the sources said.
“We are reviewing all of our options,” a senior congressional source told McClatchy. “With Dermer, the issue is that there already was a severe lack of trust. But now there is a severe lack of confidence. It is completely unclear that he represents his government given he has made promises that he has not kept and wasn’t clear if he ever had any chance of keeping.”
The Democratic lawmakers include Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel of New York and Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey of New York.
President Trump weighed in on the report on Sunday, asserting that the news equated to Democrats having “such disdain for Israel”:
House Democrats want to take action against Israel because it is fighting back against two (maybe four) people that have said unthinkably bad things about it & the Israeli people. Dems have such disdain for Israel! What happened? AOC Plus 4 is the new face of the Democrat Party!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 18, 2019
The White House issued a more formal statement today on the reports, noting Democrats “cannot change the laws Israel has passed to protect itself”:
“Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar have a well-documented history of anti-Semitic comments, anti-Semitic social media posts and anti-Semitic relationships,” said White House spokesman Hogan Gidley. “Israel has the right to prevent people who want to destroy it from entering the country – and Democrats’ pointless congressional inquiries here in America cannot change the laws Israel has passed to protect itself.”
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) also spoke out against the plan over the weekend, calling it a “SERIOUS mistake”:
There’s a good arg Israel should have allowed Omar & Tlaib entry: to confront bigotry w/ truth directly. But now Dem Leadership considering adopting their anti-Israel positions—a SERIOUS mistake. I hope that pro-Israel Dem voices (any left?) prevail. https://t.co/ZNt0Rze3w2
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) August 17, 2019
Cruz has been one of the more outspoken voices in the Senate speaking out against anti-Semitism. In June, he and Democratic Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) were successful in getting the Senate to unanimously pass a resolution expressly condemning anti-Semitism.
— Based in North Carolina, Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter. –