Politics

Democrats call for ‘real action to confront racism’ following speech by Rep. Lauren Boebert

Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) tweeted an apology to the Muslim community on Friday after Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) called her out for “anti-Muslim bigotry” over an anecdote she shared in a recent speech.

Hours later, Democratic leadership released a statement criticizing Boebert’s “Islamophobic and racist comments” and calling on their GOP counterparts to “finally take real action to confront racism.”

In a video of her speech, Boebert tells a story — which Omar says never happened — in which they are in an elevator together and a Capitol Police officer is hurrying toward the elevator as the door is closing. “I look to my left, and there she is. Ilhan Omar. I said, ‘Well she doesn’t have a backpack, we should be fine,’” Boebert told the laughing crowd.

Omar called Boebert a “buffoon” in a tweet about the video on Thursday. “Anti-Muslim bigotry isn’t funny & shouldn’t be normalized. Congress can’t be a place where hateful and dangerous Muslims tropes get no condemnation,” she wrote.

Boebert apologized for the comments in a tweet Friday afternoon and said she had reached out to speak with Omar directly. “I apologize to anyone in the Muslim community I offended with my comment about Rep. Omar,” Boebert wrote. “There are plenty of policy differences to focus on without this unnecessary distraction.”

Later in the day, Democratic leadership released their statement, which called for Boebert to “fully retract these comments and refrain from making similar ones going forward.” “Congresswoman Boebert’s repeated, ongoing and targeted Islamophobic comments and actions against another Member of Congress, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, are both deeply offensive and concerning,” they wrote.

“Leader [Kevin] McCarthy and the entire House Republican Leadership’s repeated failure to condemn inflammatory and bigoted rhetoric from members of their conference is outrageous,” they added. “We call on the Republican Leadership to address this priority with the Congresswoman and to finally take real action to confront racism” [The Hill].

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: DENVER POST

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