Ilhan Omar Comms Director: 'Anti-Semitism Is a Right-Wing Force'

Ilhan Omar
Ilhan Omar / Getty Images
March 27, 2019

Jeremy Slevin, the senior communications director for freshman Rep. Ilhan Omar (D., Minn.), claimed on Tuesday that "anti-Semitism is a right-wing force."

Omar, who has made several anti-Semitic remarks, tweeted, "We cannot call out one form of hate while turning a blind eye to another."

"Anti-semitism is a right-wing force Anti-semitism is a right-wing force Anti-semitism is a right-wing force Anti-semitism is a right-wing force Anti-semitism is a right-wing force Anti-semitism is a right-wing force Anti-semitism is a right-wing force," Slevin said, quote-tweeting Omar's tweet.

Conservatives pushed back against Slevin, noting his boss's past anti-Semitic comments, which prompted him to clarify that he was Jewish.

"I am Jewish and my family also fled Russia. I am well aware of Soviet persecution," Slevin tweeted. "My tweet was referring to the United States (which I should have made clear). I also don't view the Soviet Union as progressive in any meaningful way."

Omar isn't the first Minnesota member of Congress that Slevin has worked for who has been accused of being anti-Semitic. According to Linkedin, Slevin worked for former Rep. Keith Ellison (D., Minn.), who now serves as the attorney general of Minnesota, for about two years. Ellison admitted last year that "in the early 1990s" he had believed the anti-Semitic Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan "had some things I thought he had to offer." He would then say later that he realized his views were "incompatible," despite being together at least three times in recent years, including a private meeting.

Farrakhan has been a lightning rod of controversy for several people in the Democratic Party who have associated with the minister besides Ellison, including the leaders of the Women's March.

Farrakhan came to the defense of Omar last month shortly after she was pressured to apologize for a now-deleted tweet widely condemned as anti-Semitic, receiving backlash from Democratic colleagues, Jewish organizations, and even Chelsea Clinton.

"Ms. Omar from Somalia – she started talking about 'the Benjamins' and they are trying to make her apologize. Sweetheart, don't do that. Pardon me for calling you sweetheart, but you do have a sweet heart. You sure are using it to shake the government up, but you have nothing to apologize for," Farrakhan said. "Israel and AIPAC pays off senators and congressmen to do their bidding, so you're not lying, so if you're not lying. Stop laying down. You were sent there by the people to shake up that corrupt House."