Politics

Pence at AIPAC: Anti-Semitism Has No Place in Congress

Vice President Mike Pence condemned Rep. Ilhan Omar's (D., Minn.) suggestion that American Jews have an "allegiance to a foreign power," speaking out broadly against anti-Semitism from members of Congress during the American Israel Public Affairs Committee's annual policy conference on Monday.

"Anti-Semitism has no place in the Congress of the United States of America," Pence said. "And at a minimum, anyone who slanders those who support this historic alliance between the United States and Israel should never have a seat on the Foreign Affairs Committee of the United States House of Representatives."

Pence said that Omar's behavior represents a radical wing of the Democratic party, which threatens to become its ruling voice.

"It's astonishing to think that the party of Harry Truman, which did so much to help create the state of Israel, has been co-opted by people who promote rank anti-Semitic rhetoric and work to undermine the broad American consensus of support for Israel," Pence said.

In 2012, Omar tweeted that Israel had "hypnotized the world." Earlier this year, she has made more anti-Semitic remarks on Twitter, suggesting that Americans supporting Israel only do so because of campaign contributions from AIPAC. The tweet has since been deleted, as well as other anti-Semitic tweets and retweets from Omar.

Omar's most recent comments sparked outrage, and prompted House Democrats to pass a resolution condemning all forms of hate, but not anti-Semitism exclusively. Pence also condemned this at AIPAC.

"The party that's been the home of so many American Jews for so long today struggled to muster the votes to unequivocally condemn anti-Semitism in a resolution," Pence said.

After the liberal group MoveOn encouraged 2020 Democratic candidates to boycott this year's AIPAC, Omar showed her support for the boycott by sharing tweets praising Democrats for skipping the conference from MoveOn, as well as from fellow freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's (D., N.Y.) chief of staff.