McCarthy vows to bar Rep. Omar from committee if GOP takes back House

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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is vowing to bar progressive Rep. Ilhan Omar — “or anybody that has an anti-semitic, anti-American view” — from serving on the powerful House Committee on Foreign Affairs if Republicans take back the majority in 2022, following her recent comments comparing the US and Israel to the Taliban and Hamas.

His promise comes in the wake of Omar coming under fire from members on both sides of the aisle after tweeting: “We must have the same level of accountability and justice for all victims of crimes against humanity. We have seen unthinkable atrocities committed by the US, Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban. I asked @SecBlinken where people are supposed to go for justice,” along with a video of her questioning Secretary of State Antony Blinken at a hearing. 

While she later walked back her comments — a move that was met with praise from Democratic leadership — GOP leaders have called on Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to remove her from her post, on the basis that it is not the first time Omar has made what have been perceived by many as anti-Semetic remarks.

Following Omar’s mea-culpa, fellow Squad member Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) accused Pelosi of stifling the free speech of Muslim lawmakers and the speaker took no further action rather than risk a further fracturing between the party’s far-left and more moderate wings.

“I will promise you this: If we are fortunate enough to have the majority, Omar would not be serving on Foreign Affairs, or anybody that has an anti-semitic, anti-American view,” McCarthy said during an appearance on Fox News on Tuesday. 

The push for Omar to be removed from her committee posts follows Democratic leadership having brought a resolution which passed largely along party lines to remove Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) after a string of controversial social media posts emerged from prior to her time in Congress.

McCarthy is weighing forcing a vote on a privileged resolution to remove Omar from her committee posts – a move that would likely fail on the floor.

In addition to calls for committee removal, a group of GOP lawmakers introduced a censure resolution to formally condemn members of “The Squad” for anti-Israel remarks on Monday.

Omar’s most recent comments are not the first time she has come under fire for her rhetoric on Israel, with the House having passed a resolution condemning anti-Semitism, racism and Islamophobia in 2019 after Omar made accusations against Jews of dual loyalty, and accused supporters of Israel of being “all about the Benjamins.”

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