Rebuke or CYA? Pelosi takes aim at Omar -- in speech to AIPAC

U.S. Rep Ilhan Omar D-Minn. speaks to support LGBTQ and allied high school students from across the state of Minnesota outside the State Capitol in St. Paul

USA congresswoman Ilhan Omar criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday, saying the focus of his speech at this year's American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) conference in Washington, D.C. was on her.

"From this Benjamin, it's not about the Benjamins!" His remarks were made during the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) conference in Washington on March 26.

"President Donald Trump embraces embattled Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu, while overall sympathy for the Israelis slips a bit among voters", Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll, commented on results as they pertained to current events.

"Those who seek to defame this great organization, AIPAC, those who seek to undermine American support for Israel, they must be confronted", Netanyahu said.

"A condemnation for people that want to exercise their First Amendment rights is beneath any leader, and I hope that we find a better use of language when we are trying to speak as members of Congress that are sworn to protect the Constitution", Omar told reporters following a House Democratic caucus meeting.

Senator Bob Menendez, a New Jersey Democrat and senior member of Senate Foreign Relations, warned Republicans against tagging Democrats unfairly as anti-Semitic and he offered a veiled shot at Trump. "And just the same, when you accuse Jews of funding caravans of asylum-seekers at our southern border, or fail to call out and condemn the rise of white supremacy at home and overseas, you are fanning those flames".

Pelosi, a regular at AIPAC's conference, referenced the Omar controversy in her speech Tuesday, touting that the "the full House came together to condemn the anti-Semitic myth of dual loyalty and all forms of bigotry".

Israeli warplanes targeted Palestinian homes in Gaza after a rocket landed on an Israeli home north of Tel Aviv, injuring seven.

"I simply declare - to be anti-Semitic is to be anti-American".

The resolution was spurred by Rep. Ilhan Omar's use of anti-Semitic memes.

"It's because America and Israel share a love of freedom and democracy", Netanyahu explained.

Steny Hoyer dismissed Omar (without naming her) by reminding the AIPAC audience that Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Rashida Tlaib were just three of the "62 freshman Democrats", although he later clarified that he was criticizing the media rather than the trio. It's part of our history ... and we shall never, ever give it up.

Rep. Josh Gottheimer, who had helped lead the fight for a resolution specifically addressing anti-Semitism, participated in a panel discussion during the AIPAC conference.

"Whenever we see anything shifting, I think it's very, very important that Democrats and Republicans, stand up and make it very clear that we will not allow partisanship, from either side, into the relationship", said Gottheimer, D-5th Dist. He, too, talked about how support for Israel needed to remain bipartisan.

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