Pelosi says Omar unaware of Israel criticism impact

WASHINGTON — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says freshman Democrat Ilhan Omar didn’t realize her words about Israel would sound anti-Semitic to some powerful members of Congress.

Omar’s comment that a pledge of “allegiance” to the Jewish state is expected of lawmakers sparked enough outrage to split Democrats and throw their agenda into question. Some Democrats wanted a resolution condemning anti-Semitism, while others said that would have unfairly singled out the Minnesota Democrat.

Pelosi tells reporters the resolution the House will vote on Thursday will “speak out against anti-Semitism, anti-Islamophobia, anti-white supremacy and all the forms that it takes.”

Of Omar, Pelosi says, “I do not believe she understood the full weight of her words. These words have a history and a cultural impact.”

Omar, a Somali-American, is one of two Muslim women in the House.

— AP

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi waves as she walks to a news conference on March 5, 2019, in Austin, Texas, to discuss a voting rights bill. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

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