Rep. Ilhan Omar Reportedly Met With Jewish Groups to Apologize for Anti-Semitic Comments

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Posted: Feb 21, 2019 1:45 PM
Rep. Ilhan Omar Reportedly Met With Jewish Groups to Apologize for Anti-Semitic Comments

Source: AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) reportedly spoke privately with Jewish groups Tuesday to apologize again for some anti-Semitic comments she made on Twitter earlier this month.

“Let me reiterate my sincere apology for any actual hurt my words have caused,” Omar said on a conference call, according to the Times of Israel. “I know there are a lot of people who in the last weeks have expressed support in trying to say this isn’t anti-Semitic or this shouldn’t be looked at in that way.”

“I do not want to give space or energy to anyone who wants to minimize the hurt,” she said.

She said that the call was a chance “for you all to directly hear from me how I feel about my actions and for us to start the process of not only healing but building a relationship and getting to the process of politicking on our viewpoints on this.”

The call included the Anti-Defamation League, the Jewish Democratic Council of America, Americans for Peace Now, the refugee resettlement organization HIAS and Bend the Arc.

Rep. Omar drew criticism from both sides of the aisle when she implied on Twitter that some members of Congress were influenced by donations to defend Israel.

"My intention is never to offend my constituents or Jewish Americans as a whole," she said in an initial apology after the backlash. "We have to always be willing to step back and think through criticism, just as I expect people to hear me when others attack me for my identity. This is why I unequivocally apologize."

However, she added that she is still concerned about the “role” of groups like the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).

"At the same time, I reaffirm the problematic role of lobbyists in our politics, whether it be AIPAC, the NRA or the fossil fuel industry. It's gone on too long and we must be willing to address it," she said in the statement.