Kaufman: The party of Ilhan Omar?

As the Democrat Party is increasingly hostile to moderates, it apparently has plenty of room for bigots.

AJ Kaufman

“Progressive incumbents winning our primaries by double digits isn’t just “survival” — it’s a mandate for change. We are here to stay — and so are our progressive, people-first values.”Ilhan Omar, Aug. 14

David Duke’s favorite member of Congress won her primary earlier this week. Yes, Duke, the anti-Semitic white supremacist and former KKK grand wizard doesn’t lionize some right-wing white dude from Louisiana; rather, he is fond of Ilhan Omar. Last year, Duke called her the “most important member of congress” and has tweeted heart emojis in response to her anti-Semitic rants.

As the Democrat Party is increasingly hostile to moderates, it apparently has plenty of room for bigots. Despite endorsing Omar’s opponent, the largest paper in Minnesota confessed this “cemented her upward rise in the progressive wing of the Democratic Party.” That’s telling.

Tuesday’s victory is also the latest triumph for the far left “Squad,” a group of freshmen socialists, also including Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley and another open anti-Semite, Rashida Tlaib.

Omar’s Fifth district may be heavily Muslim, but it’s also the most Jewish congressional district in Minnesota. To that end, during her initial campaign run two years ago, Omar assured a local Jewish audience that she opposes the anti-Israel boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS), a group so bigoted that nearly 30 states passed legislation banning organizations that support BDS from receiving state funds. The movement, deemed anti-Semitic by politically diverse politicians, seeks to economically harm the Jewish state; but even its founder — a pro-terror radical — admits the ultimate goal is destruction of Israel.

A fifth squad member, endorsed by Bernie Sanders, is also pro BDS and joins congressional Democrats next year.

One of the companies BDS targets is General Mills, which appeared on an anti-Israel boycott blacklist published by the UN earlier this year. General Mills, of course, maintains its headquarters in Omar’s district; so she is promoting a vile movement that singles out the Jewish state, while also economically harming the voters she represents. Progressive, indeed.

The first-term congresswoman’s trenchant views are also augmenting an internecine war between the true liberals and hard left in her district. Consider how primary voting patterns broke down this week: suburbanites (mostly White, Jewish and Asian) went for her opponent, while downtown and the university area (woke millennial types, wealthy professors, Somali/African-American) supported Omar. Perhaps the power within today’s Democrat Party is not with Nancy Pelosi and party elders, but with illiberal activists like Omar and her nefarious confidantes.

None of this agitational rhetoric occurred overnight. A history of Omar’s anti-Semitic commentary is exhaustive and illustrative, even in such a short time.

They include infamous wisdom like “Israel has hypnotized the world.” This draws on anti-Jewish stereotypes of a small cabal of Jews manipulating others to control the globe. The American Jewish Committee blasted her for “continuing to traffic in anti-Semitic tropes” and “seeking to fan the flames of anti-Semitism among her constituents.”

Replying to left-wing journalist Glenn Greenwald’s tweet implying loyalty to Israel over America, Omar tweeted, “It’s all about the Benjamins.” When asked to clarify her invective about Jews controlling politicians, she claimed AIPAC is the culprit. After these comments, Omar ranted on various topics to a group of left-leaning Jews and again questioned the “allegiance to a foreign country” of American Jews.

Omar recently distributed a campaign mailer drawing attention to donations received by her Aug. 11 primary opponent, Antone Melton-Meaux. In it, she claimed voters couldn’t trust Melton-Meaux because he’s “in the pocket of Wall Street bankers.” Every name in the mailer is a Jew, another age-old anti-Semitic trope.

Just days before taking her seat in Washington, she supported the racist, anti-Semitic “Black Hebrew Israelites” group, whose members have killed Jews in America. When the media-induced Covington Catholic hoax occurred, Omar tweeted, “The boys were taunting 5 Black men before they surrounded Phillips and led racist chants … Sandmann’s family hired a right wing PR firm to write his non-apology.”

Factually, Black Hebrew Israelites called the students several offensive slurs, and if Omar believes a teenager unexpectedly bullied by national corporations shouldn’t hire a public-relations firm, she should denounce the anti-gun Parkland students. Embarrassed by another slur, she deleted the tweet.

Omar’s inflammatory views, not only of our chief ally, but the United States — a nation that allowed her family to settle in freedom, paid for her education, and jumpstarted her political career —  are ignorant and repugnant. Like any national politician, her lies and divisive vitriol deserve opprobrium.

A wise man once pondered what Omar’s endgame is. I’m still not 100% sure, but it’s coming into focus.