In case you missed it, Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar is still very much in the throes of a full-blown tantrum after being relieved of her House Foreign Affairs Committee duties by Republican Speaker Kevin McCarthy.
McCarthy did nothing when Taylor Greene said Muslims don’t belong in our government.
He did nothing when Boebert said I was a terrorist.
He did nothing when MTG wanted @RashidaTlaib & I kicked out of Congress unless we swore in on a Christian Bible.
Spare me the GOP hypocrisy.
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) January 30, 2023
As if any of that has had any bearing on her own nasty antisemitism, which she began cultivating long before she was a sitting member of U.S. Congress. It’s what you call deflection, and if this spin from the Washington Post’s Philip Bump is any indication, the MSM are more than willing to pitch in and lend Omar a hand:
Analysis: Omar faces potential ouster from the House Foreign Relations Committee, a punishment that is inextricable from her religion. Had she not been a practicing Muslim who’d triggered right-wing opprobrium from day one? This moment would be different. https://t.co/m8i7lkOzEJ
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) January 31, 2023
That characterization of Omar as “anti-American” was most immediately a response to a widely condemned tweet from Omar in which she decried the “unthinkable atrocities committed by the U.S., Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban.” But remember that Trump’s description of her as hating the country predated this tweet by half a year.
And Ilhan Omar’s hatred of Israel predated that. What’s your point, Philip?
Many on the right clearly saw Omar as having suspect loyalties from her first moments in office for little obvious reason other than her religion. Various comments from Omar — some obviously problematic, others overblown in the conservative media — were stapled onto that narrative. Propelled in part by Trump’s commentary and heavily by perceptions about her religion, Omar became a representative example of the right’s framing of their opponents as hard-left, anti-Israel and anti-American. This is how and why Trump elevated her and in doing so he created political value for other Republicans in similarly targeting her.
Of course, McCarthy and his allies don’t see this as a function of Omar’s religion. In fact, Republicans are much less likely to say that Muslims face discrimination than are Americans overall. YouGov polling conducted in December shows that Republicans are about as likely to say that Muslims face discrimination as they are to say the same of Christians.
But had Omar never offered those comments about Israel, it’s likely that she wouldn’t be targeted by McCarthy now. Had she offered those comments and not been a practicing Muslim who’d triggered right-wing opprobrium from day one? This moment would again probably look quite different.
Oh, please. Is Bump serious with this?
Of course he’s serious. Which is what makes it even more pathetic. He’s effectively deflecting on behalf of Omar (do Marjorie Taylor Greene and Donald Trump’s antisemitic remarks negate Omar’s?) and using her religion to excuse her antisemitism. That should be taken as an insult by all decent people, including Muslims.
“anti-Semitism is fine from a Muslim, it is their religion” – @pbump https://t.co/3zwFldKyvP
— Ahmed Al Assliken (@assliken) January 31, 2023
Kind of gross that you think virulent antisemitism is inseparable from Ilhan Omar’s religion.
— Mike Coté (@ratlpolicy) January 31, 2023
What the hell, Philip.
If she was a devout Christian that was an antisemite, maybe the Democrats would have done something about her bigotry.
Instead, because she was a Muslim, they supported her bigotry without any punishment. https://t.co/PtJsHKYOZK
— Pradheep J. Shanker (@Neoavatara) January 31, 2023
Maybe Dems would’ve done something. They tend to tolerate antisemitic bigotry as long as it’s coming from their side. But apparently it’s fine for them and columnists like Philip Bump to use Omar’s (and Rashida Tlaib’s) religion as justification for rabid antisemitism.
Ilhan Omar: “I hate Jews.”
Democrats: “That’s terrible.”
Ilhan Omar: “But I’m Muslim!”
Democrats: “That’s ok then.”
— Boomieleaks (@Boomieleaks) January 31, 2023
For a fantastic point-by-point takedown of Bump’s “analysis,” be sure to check out John Sexton’s post over at HotAir:
This Philip Bump column about Rep. Omar proves nothinghttps://t.co/nN73mDo5Kc
— HotAir.com (@hotairblog) January 31, 2023
All it proves is that Philip Bump is a hack.
But we already knew that.