Democrat Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) of New York is being criticized on social media for her remarks about House Republicans for removing Representative Ilhan Omar, Democrat from Minnesota, from the Foreign Affairs Committee for her past comments have been deemed antisemitic.
“Don’t tell me this is about consistency; don’t tell me this is about a condemnation of antisemitic remarks,” shouted AOC in a passionate speech on the floor of the House Thursday.
According to AOC, removing Omar from the committee is racist. Previously, Democrats took Republicans off committees when the former had a narrow hold on control of the House.
“This is about targeting women of color in the United States of America,” said AOC.
Republican Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy remarked that the vote to keep Omar off the Foreign Affairs Committee was the correct action for her anti-Israel remarks.
“I am not removing people from all committees,” McCarthy said Thursday.
Omar also warned the world and the GOP that the move to remove her from the committee would only prove to make her words resonate more loudly.
“I didn’t come to Congress to be silent,” said Omar on the House floor. “I came to Congress to be their voice, and my leadership and voice will not be diminished if I am not on this committee for one term. My voice will get louder and stronger, and my leadership will be celebrated around the world as it has been.”
At the end of AOC’s rebuke of House Republicans, she slammed the political opposition for not apologizing to her when she had received a death threat.
“Don’t tell me because I didn’t get a single apology when my life was threatened!” said AOC before slamming her notebook on the podium and storming off.
Omar defiant before voting to remove her
Rep. Omar was defiant in a speech before the counting of the votes, accused Republicans of attempting to silence her because she is Muslim and an immigrant, and promised to keep speaking out.
“Is anyone surprised that I am being targeted? Is anyone surprised that I am somehow deemed unworthy to speak about American foreign policy? Or that they see me as a powerful voice that needs to be silenced? Frankly, it is expected because when you push power, power pushes back,” said Omar.
“My leadership and voice will not be diminished. If I am not on this committee for one term, my voice will get louder and stronger, and my leadership will be celebrated around the world as it has been. So, take your votes or not. I am here to stay, and I am here to be a voice against harms around the world and advocate for a better world.”
The GOP House Speaker, Kevin McCarthy, had made removing Omar from the committee one of his first tasks after being elected leader last month.
Wednesday, the chamber voted along party lines to move forward with Omar’s removal, in a move that explicitly condemns comments Omar made about Israel that drew criticism from Republicans and some Democrats of antisemitism.
Omar apologized and said she has since understood that her comments used antisemitic tropes.