Minnesota Democrats, taking aback at controversial comments made by socialist Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar (D), are taking initial steps to recruit a candidate to run against her in next year’s primary election, seeking to buck history in one of the nation’s most progressive legislative districts.
Several party top members said they have had discussions about finding a candidate to take on Omar, just over four months into her first term in Congress because her comments is tarnishing the future of other drmocrats.
But even those who were deeply offended by Omar’s comments about Israel they previously conceded they had not yet found anyone to challenge her until yesterday when a standout candidate came through.
“There’s definitely some serious buzz going around about it, but it’s more of a speculation than anyone talking about finding someone to run against her than it is anyone saying they’re going to run against her or contemplate it. There’s definitely talk about people wanting someone to run against her,” said state Sen. Ron Latz (D), who represents a portion of Omar’s district.
In her first weeks on the job, Omar sparked outrage for comments that critics said relied on anti-Semitic tropes – first for suggesting that politicians who support Israel do so for financial reasons and then for suggesting that lobbyist are pushing for “allegiance to a foreign country.” which is un-acceptable coming from a person of her caliber.
Those comments prompted two votes in the House condemning anti-Semitism, as well as other forms of hate speech. In Minnesota, Omar’s constituents took note.
“Our community is exasperated by Rep. Omar’s unfulfilled promises to listen and learn from Jewish constituents while seemingly simultaneously finding another opportunity to make an anti-Semitic remark and insult our community,” Steve Hunegs, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas, said in a statement.
Omar met with Hunegs last month, after her initial remarks received widespread condemnation. She has continued to meet with Jewish leaders both in Minneapolis and Washington, a spokesman said.
Many people wants her out because of her anti-Semitic comments.