Omar anti-Semitism debate widens split in Democratic party

US House Democrats Struggling over Rebuke to Lawmaker for Israel Comments

Democrats’ anti-hate resolution won’t mention Ilhan Omar, Pelosi says

Following the U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly passing a resolution on Thursday, condemning anti-Semitism and other forms of hatred, U.S. President Donald Trump labeled Democrats as "anti-Jewish" and "anti-Israel".

Democrats wrestled for days about whether or how to punish Omar, a freshman from Minnesota who's one of two Muslim women in Congress.

"For the president, who when neo-Nazis marched in Charlottesville in front of a synagogue and said "burn it down" and he said "both sides" are to blame, this is a new divisive low", the Democrat from NY, who is Jewish, wrote on Facebook.

Republicans openly mocked the all-encompassing resolution, particularly after a last-minute addition of a clause condemning white supremacists continuing "to exploit bigotry and weaponize hate for political gain".

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Top Democrats were among the lawmakers who immediately pushed back against Omar's tweet that accused pro-Israel lawmakers of pushing "for allegiance to a foreign country".

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has reportedly been spearheading a resolution explicitly condemning anti-Semitism that he plans to introduce early next week. Democrats are trying to push past a dispute that has overwhelmed their agenda and exposed fault lines that could shadow them through next year's elections.

The resolution, which passed 407-23, was publically panned by several Republicans, including House Conference Chairwoman Liz Cheney (R-WY) joined Reps. Opposing votes came exclusively from Republicans angered by the omission of a condemnation of Omar's comments.

"Real Time" host Bill Maher reversed course over allegations of anti-Semitism against Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn, after previously defending her.

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"I don't think that the congresswoman, perhaps, appreciates the full weight of how it was heard by other people", Pelosi said.

"It is absolutely shameful that Nancy Pelosi and Leader Hoyer and the Democratic leaders will not put her name in a resolution on the floor and condemn her remarks and remove her from the House Foreign Affairs Committee", Cheney said. "We have groups like If Not Now, and we have, again, these polls that show that American Jews are more and more disillusioned, especially young Jews, with Israel", she said. Omar, who can be quite gracious and charming in real life, turns into a bit of a liberal troll when she gets on Twitter or behind a lectern.

"She's not off the hook herself", Gold said while noting the possibility that "this might be a change, and I would love to see that". A few Republicans who opposed the resolution said it should have only covered anti-Semitism. "I was saying how Trump is different from Obama, and why we should focus on policy not politics", she said in the tweet.

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