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Democratic leader bashes GOP’s ‘political revenge’ Omar vote


House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) lashed out at GOP leaders on Thursday over their decision to boot Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) from the Foreign Affairs Committee, accusing the Republicans of adopting a double standard by ignoring antisemitism in their own ranks. 
Jeffries pointed to comments from several House Republicans that compared President Biden to Hitler; questioned the loyalty of an American-based Israeli lobbying group; and joked about the recent attack on the husband of former Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).
“It’s a double, triple, quadruple-and-beyond standard when you think about all of the [GOP] members — these are just three — who have engaged in highly offensive, at times antisemitic, behavior, rhetoric [and] hate,” Jeffries said during a press briefing in the Capitol. 
Omar, a Somali refugee and one of just three Muslims of Congress, had come under fire several years ago for a series of comments deemed antisemitic by members of both parties, and Republicans wasted no time using their new majority to push a resolution kicking her off of the Foreign Affairs panel. 
The vote, which took place Thursday afternoon, passed along strict partisan lines, 218 to 211. Republican Rep. David Joyce (Ohio), voted present. 
“I’m not saying she can’t have committees,” Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said Wednesday evening. “But to sit on Foreign Affairs, I worry about … what the rest of the world looks at, every single word that is said there.”
The most prominent of Omar’s controversies occurred in 2019, just weeks after she first arrived on Capitol Hill, when she tweeted that lawmaker support for Israel is “all about the Benjamins, baby” — a remark that sparked charges of antisemitism from Jewish advocates and widespread condemnation on Capitol Hill.
Jeffries made no attempt to whitewash Omar’s comments, saying “she has used antisemitic tropes.” 
“Rep. Omar certainly has made mistakes,” he said.

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