A feud between Reps. Ilhan Omar and Lauren Boebert only appeared to escalate after the two congresswomen spoke on the phone Monday, with the call apparently ending with Omar hanging up on Boebert after the two demanded apologies from each other.
Boebert, a Colorado Republican, said in an Instagram video that she first reached out to Omar on Friday following widespread outrage over comments she made calling the Somali immigrant and Muslim Democrat from Minnesota part of the “Jihad Squad” and joked that she could be a terrorist.
Boebert was filmed at an event telling a story about a Capitol police officer running to stop an elevator door from closing as she got in an elevator with Omar, to which she said: “Well, she doesn’t have a backpack. We should be fine.”
BOEBERT CLAIMS CAPITOL POLICE ‘FRETTED’ OVER ILHAN OMAR, CALLS HER ‘JIHAD SQUAD’ MEMBER
“I wanted to let her know that I had reflected on my previous remarks,” Boebert said in the video posted Monday. “As a strong Christian woman who values faith deeply, I never want anything I say to offend someone’s religion. So I told her that.”
She referenced a tweet apologizing to “anyone in the Muslim community I offended.” After Omar expressed the statement wasn’t good enough, Boebert said she reiterated the statement.
“She kept asking for a public apology. So I told Ilhan Omar that she should make a public apology to the American people for her anti-American, antisemitic, anti-police rhetoric,” Boebert said. “She continued to press, and I continued to press back. And then, Rep. Ilhan Omar hung up on me.”
In a statement released shortly after Boebert posted the video, Omar had a different account of events but appeared to acknowledge hanging up on Boebert.
“Instead of apologizing for her Islamophobic comments and fabricated lies, Rep. Boebert refused to publicly acknowledge her hurtful and dangerous comments. She instead doubled down on her rhetoric and I decided to end the unproductive call,” Omar said in a statement. “I believe in engaging with those we disagree with respectfully, but not when that disagreement is rooted in outright bigotry and hate.”
Rep. Omar’s statement on her conversation with Rep. Lauren Boebert. pic.twitter.com/B5JJVijXKI— Rep. Ilhan Omar (@Ilhan) November 29, 2021
Omar reiterated her demand that House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who spoke with Boebert after the video went viral and recommended that the two representatives meet, do more to hold members of his party accountable for “repeated instances of anti-Muslim hate and harassment.”
“This is not about one hateful statement or one politician; it is about a party that has mainstreamed bigotry and hatred. It is time for Republican Leader McCarthy to actually hold his party accountable,” Omar said.
A joint statement last week from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democratic leadership also called on McCarthy to “take real action to confront racism” in light of the video.
The Boebert-Omar blowup happened just one week after House Democrats voted to censure Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar and strip him of his committee assignments over an anime video he posted showing a character with his face killing a character with New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s face. That sets the stage for Democrats to try the same action against Boebert.
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Boebert, for her part, does not appear inclined to do any more apologizing.
“Rejecting an apology and hanging up on someone is part of cancel culture 101 and a pillar of the Democrat party,” Boebert said in her video. “This isn’t about religion. This is about the horrible, failed Democrat policies and anti-Americanism that I will call out each and every time I hear it.”