Representative Ilhan Omar (D-MN) has a contentious past. The Democratic legislator has come under fire numerous times for remarks they are accused of being anti-Semitic by members of Congress on both sides of the aisle. She recently attacked House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) after he refused to put her on a committee.
House Minority Leader Jakeem Jeffries confirmed his committee assignments for returning members on January 27. He chose Omar for the House Foreign Affairs Committee, where she has also served on the Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, and Global Human Rights, among other nominations.
McCarthy has made it known that he plans to put Omar’s resignation to a vote. As opposed to Reps. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Eric Swalwell (D-CA), she cannot be expelled from the Foreign Affairs Committee by the Speaker because it is not a special committee. Omar reacted angrily at the Republican leader’s selection of another job. She stated on Twitter that leaving the sole member of Congress who was born in Africa off of the African subcommittee is “racist, xenophobic, and discriminatory.”
As the only African born, not being on the Africa subcommittee is not just an elimination of a unique voice but an elimination of all the voices that have never been heard on a committee on the continent.
It’s racist, xenophobic and discriminatory.
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) January 26, 2023
The controversy over committee assignments began in 2021, when the Democratic-controlled House voted to kick out Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Paul Gosar (R-AZ) for encouraging violence. Despite the fact that a number of Republicans supported the Democrats, McCarthy pledged retaliation and declared that if the GOP won the majority, he would fire Schiff, Swalwell, and Omar.
Omar’s continued membership on the Foreign Affairs Committee has recently received the support of at least three Republican House members. Reps. Ken Buck (R-CO), Victoria Spartz (R-IN), and Nancy Mace (R-SC) have all indicated that they will vote to retain the Democrat. Tim Burchett (TN) and David Valadao (CA), two additional Republicans, are unsure. If McCarthy fails to gain support from the Democratic Party, he won’t be able to get rid of her. He can’t afford to lose another GOP vote.