House votes to remove Rep. Omar from Foreign Affairs Committee over prior bigoted remarks

In 2021, after the then-Democratic House majority voted along party lines to boot two Republican members from all of their committee assignments, the House GOP vowed to return the favor whenever they held majority control of the chamber again.

That vow was made good on Thursday, to an extent, when the Republican majority House voted along party lines to remove Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) from the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Breitbart reported.

The final vote to remove Omar was 218-211-1, with every single Democrat voting against the resolution and Rep. David Joyce (R-OH), who sits on the Ethics Committee, voting “present.”

Omar removed for past comments

To be sure, the stated reasoning for the resolution to remove Rep. Omar from the Foreign Affairs Committee was her documented history over the years of making comments deemed by many to be anti-Israel and anti-Semitic.

The Somali-born former refugee turned Minnesota congresswoman has also made comments disparaging of the United States, including comparing military action by the U.S. and Israel to terrorist attacks by Hamas and the Taliban, or downplaying the significance of the 9/11 terror attacks, in which nearly 3,000 Americans were killed, as an incident in which “some people did something” for which all Muslims were paying the price.

In light of those 9/11 remarks, Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-NY) tweeted, “Today, some people will do something to Ilhan Omar’s committee assignment.”

Victory for new House GOP leadership team

Breitbart noted that House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) had promised last year to remove Rep. Omar from the Foreign Affairs Committee if given the opportunity to do so, and others, such as House Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R-MN), shared in his commitment to making good on that promise.

“There is no debate that Ilhan Omar, the face of antisemitism in the Democrat Party, has no place representing American interests on the Foreign Affairs Committee,” Emmer told the outlet in a statement. “Ms. Omar is an embarrassment to Minnesota and our country.”

Interestingly enough, given the slim majority margin, McCarthy and Emmer almost lacked the necessary votes to ensure Omar’s removal, according to Politico, but they managed to convince a few holdouts to flip from “No” to “Yes” on the measure after agreeing to amend the resolution to include language about “due process” to appeal a removal vote to the House Ethics Committee.

Progressive “Squad” members furious in defense of Omar

As for the Democratic opposition to the removal resolution for Rep. Omar, it was understandably most fierce from the Minnesota congresswoman’s fellow progressive “Squad” members, according to The Hill, most particularly Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Cori Bush (D-MO), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), and Ayanna Pressley (D-MA).

Ocasio-Cortez called the removal effort an example of the GOP’s “racism and incitement of violence against women of color in this body” and was more broadly “about targeting women of color in the United States of America.”

Bush said that the whole thing was “offensive” and “racist gaslighting” and a “blatantly Islamophobic” action reflective of “white supremacy.”

Removal limited to just Foreign Affairs Committee

In the end, unlike what Democrats did to Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Paul Gosar (R-AZ) two years prior by removing them from all committee assignments, this effort against Omar was narrowly focused on her seat on the Foreign Affairs Committee, given her strong and repeated bias against the top U.S. ally in the Middle East, Israel.

“We’ve watched what she has done,” Speaker McCarthy told reporters two days before the vote, according to Politico. “I just think she can serve on other committees. It would be best if the Democrats didn’t put her in the position of Foreign Affairs. If they do, she will not serve on Foreign Affairs. They can choose another committee for her.”

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