After months of criticism for repeated anti-Semitic comments, Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., is finally in the news for something else: Insulting the intelligence of Americans who disagree with her politics.
On the first episode of the Nation’s “Next Left” podcast, the Somali-American congresswoman talked with host John Nichols about President Trump, immigration and refugee policy, and the “ignorance” of voters who are supposedly misled by Republicans.
“So suddenly you’re elected, and you had this teaching moment,” Nichols says during a portion of the podcast discussing President Trump’s comments about refugee resettlement. “It strikes me that, in watching you, you are conscious of teaching moments and of that opportunity to say something that might cause people to think differently about what’s going on.”
Omar responded by saying that American voters suffer from “a misconception about refugees and the process they go through to come to the United States.” She went on to say that voters have also been “misinformed” about the issue as well, and that “Republicans are really good at misinformation.”
As an example, Omar cited a previous candidate for governor in Minnesota who pledged to end the refugee resettlement program in the state, which she said was an uninformed promise:
“There are agencies that run the resettlement program,” the congresswoman said. “If you end that contract, it’s not that refugees are not going to be resettled, it’s that the state just doesn’t get informed. And so the only leverage you have is that you are part of this contract and you can be part of the negotiations on how many people get resettled in your state.”
“And so it is not that they might not be knowledgeable about this, but they use it as a tool to stir up hate and division,” Omar continued. “And ignorance really is pervasive in many parts of, of this country. And as someone who was raised by educators, I really like to inform people about things that they might be ignorant to, willingly or unwillingly.”
Omar herself fled war-torn Somalia and spent four years in a refugee camp before eventually coming to the United States; however, she may have committed massive immigration fraud in reportedly marrying her brother.
Omar’s insults put her in line with failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, who infamously called Trump supporters “deplorables” during the 2016 campaign and later blamed her loss on parts of the country that were “looking backwards.”
Here’s a sample of the audio: