My good friend & Daily KOS colleague Professor Ian Reifowitz has a completely different take on the statements that Ilhan Omar made from me.
Recently I covered this issue on one of my Politics Done Right episodes titled “Why does the Establishment fear these four women.” I also posted the Alternet article by Salon’s writer Paul Rosenberg titled “Demonizing Ilhan Omar: Why the entire political establishment wants to crush one woman.” They both go counter to Ian’s prose.
This is an issue I do believe needs to be resolved even if it is ultimately “agree to disagree and give the benefit of the doubt.” Please read his entire piece which is much better written than all those jumping on the attack-Ilhan-Omar bandwagon.
Ian did make it clear that this isn’t a debate where he believes Ilhan Omar is an anti-Semite as others have stated but believes she must watch her words which he believes are tropes. His prose was measured and devoid of hyperbole but it was not completely convincing to me in the aggregate. And for that, I will interview Ian on Politics Done Right. We will pre-record on Tuesday and likely play it on Friday.
Ian is the Author of The Tribalization of Politics: How Rush Limbaugh’s Race-Baiting Rhetoric on the Obama Presidency Paved the Way for Trump (forthcoming in May 2019); and Obama’s America: A Transformative Vision of Our National Identity. Ian will get another appearance on Politics Done Right to discuss his new book in a few weeks as well. Hey Ian, you sure know how to get full exposure :).
Yes, I said “progressive leaders” right up front. Of course no respectable politician should ever use anti-Semitic rhetoric, or any rhetoric that promotes hate of any kind. But the matter before us this week is a test of whether the progressive movement will tolerate such rhetoric from one of our own. Rep. Ilhan Omar is someone with whom we agree on the overwhelming majority of issues—even, to a good degree, on the issue she was discussing when she used an anti-Semitic trope. That issue is Israel and the American Israel
Political ActionPublic Affairs Committee (AIPAC). Omar evoked the specter of Jewish Americans being more loyal to Israel than the United States, a long-standing anti-Semitic slur. This is a discussion within the progressive family about what we allow in our own house.
On Thursday, after a lot of back and forth and a significant rewrite of an initial resolution that apparently focused solely on anti-Semitism (although even that one did not mention Rep. Omar by name), the House overwhelmingly passed a strong resolution that condemned hate in all its forms, including anti-Semitism and Islamophobia, with the former featured prominently throughout. Every Democrat voted in favor, while 23 Republicans voted no (open white supremacist Steve King, himself condemned by name for spewing hate in a previous House resolution, voted “present”). The nine-page document has a long preamble, but here is the core statement of the resolution (note that it specifically rejects the slur Rep. Omar used, and does so in the first clause) . …
Rep. Omar, in addition to voting in favor of the resolution, stated that she was “tremendously proud” of the House’s action, and called it “great progress.” Most, albeit not all, Democrats in Congress appear reasonably satisfied with the outcome. Although the process was difficult and caused quite a bit of pain for many, I think Democrats got to the right place in the end. Once again, Nancy Pelosi showed terrific leadership skills in getting her caucus to come together around a complex issue. That doesn’t change the fact that this week was a rough one.
Source: Daily Kos