US House Representative Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) has expressed hope that the president addresses “the rise and the continuation” of anti-Muslim bigotry in the United States.
During an appearance on Monday on MSNBC’s “All In with Chris Hayes,” Omar told guest host Mehdi Hasan that she is hoping that US President Joe Biden addresses growing anti-Muslim bigotry in his upcoming State of the Union speech in Congress on Tuesday night.
I think bigotry played a large role in my being voted off the House Foreign Affairs Committee by GOP House members last week, Omar said, adding that fellow Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) and former President Donald Trump have made bigoted remarks about Muslim Americans in the past.
“It precisely has to do with bigotry,” Omar noted. “These are people who certainly don’t believe Muslim immigrants, Somali immigrants, refugees — and certainly someone who carries all those identities together — should be in the United States, let alone in Congress and wield any kind of power.”
Omar also told Hasan that she would like to hear Biden clarify in Congress that Black immigrants matter and are a part of American society.
“I haven’t heard the president been asked or address any of this, and would love to hear the president of the United States speak about the rise and the continuation of anti-Muslim bigotry, the demonization of Black immigrants, the demonization of Black people in this country,” Omar told Hasan.
“We are humans. We matter. We are part and parcel of American society,” Omar insisted. “And our lives should be valued and our opinions should be valued as every other American.”
Omar was ousted from the Foreign Affairs Committee by House Republicans last week by a 218-211 vote. The resolution, sponsored by Rep. Max Miller (R-Ohio), listed a number of anti-Israeli remarks Omar made in the past that Republicans claimed were antisemitic, arguing that for this the Minnesota congresswoman disqualified herself from serving on the committee.
When asked if she blames prominent GOP figures such as Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.), and Greene, for the recent attacks and threats she received, Omar replied that all of them do not “understand the weight that their language carries” and have no remorse for it.
“A lot of people would say, “It’s your beliefs. It is what you say. It’s the policies you push for.” But if you listen to almost every single voicemail that I get, every single hate-filled, threatening voicemail I get is always rooted in my actual identity, where I came from, my country of birth,” Omar said. “It’s rooted in the faith that I practice visibly and proudly, and it’s certainly rooted in my skin color and my ethnicity.”