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WATCH: Jewish Congressman Explains Why He Didn't Vote For Democrats' Resolution

"I believe that she knows exactly what she's doing."

Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) slammed Democrats on Thursday for protecting Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) amid her latest anti-Semitic outburst by not specifically condemning her anti-Semitism.

Zeldin's remarks came in response to the Democrats' refusal to specifically condemn Omar's anti-Semitic comments after she suggested repeatedly that Jewish members of Congress have dual loyalties.

"Let's all be honest with each other. We are here today right now because of anti-Semitic rhetoric from one member of this chamber said again, and again, and again," Zeldin began. "We would not be on this floor right now otherwise to discuss this topic."

"If that member was a Republican, that member's name would be in this resolution, and this resolution would be all about condemning anti-Semitism — and it would be done so forcefully," Zeldin continued. "That member in January had to apologize for talking about a 'hypnosis' of Israel that they have over the entire world. That member had to apologize in February by saying if you support Israel, it must be because you're bought off by Jews. That member called it an unequivocal apology, even though she filled it with equivocation. And now we're back again this time by saying that if you support the US-Israel relationship that you must have pledged allegiance to a foreign government. Except this time that member is refusing to apologize."

"Even if you gave that member every benefit of the doubt that she had no idea what she was doing, why now wouldn't she be apologizing?" he asked. "Why would she be more emboldened to refuse an apology altogether? I apparently am giving Rep. Omar more credit than the speaker is because I don't believe she is naive. I believe that she knows exactly what she's doing."

WATCH:

Full transcript:

"Let's all be honest with each other. We are here today right now because of anti-Semitic rhetoric from one member of this chamber said again, and again, and again. We would not be on this floor right now otherwise to discuss this topic. If that member was a Republican, that member's name would be in this resolution, and this resolution would be all about condemning anti-Semitism — and it would be done so forcefully. That member in January had to apologize for talking about a "hypnosis" of Israel that they have over the entire world. That member had to apologize in February by saying if you support Israel, it must be because you're bought off by Jews. That member called it an unequivocal apology, even though she filled it with equivocation. And now we're back again this time by saying that if you support the US-Israel relationship that you must have pledged allegiance to a foreign government. Except this time that member is refusing to apologize.

Even if you gave that member every benefit of the doubt that she had no idea what she was doing, why now wouldn't she be apologizing? Why would she be more emboldened to refuse an apology altogether? I apparently am giving Rep. Omar more credit than the speaker is because I don't believe she is naive. I believe that she knows exactly what she's doing.

It is an American value by the way to have reasonable legitimate criticism of a government whether it be the US government, Israel, or any other government. It is not an American value though to be hurling anti-semitic rhetoric. Anti-semitism must be condemned unequivocally and emphatically. We have members of this chamber who associate with Louis Farrakhan who says, "Hitler was a very great man."

Let's talk about a double standard. In January, we all came to this chamber we condemned white supremacy we named a Republican member we kicked that member off of his committees. He can't serve on the Small Business Committee but this member will continue to serve on the House Foreign Affairs Committee. But no now we can't come here and just emphatically solely forcefully condemn anti-semitism and name names, but if it was a Republican we would. It's time to call out these statements for what they are: pointed, bigoted, unreasonable, illegitimate, anti-semitic.

I commend my colleagues on the other side of the aisle who have been speaking out about all this anti-semitism, a few members come to mind, Chairman Engle, Congressman Deutsch, Congressman Nadler, Congresswoman Lowey, Congressman Gottheimer. Many of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle I believe to their core know how very wrong this is and there are many other members to name as well. And I'd be remiss if I didn't take this opportunity to say thank you to each and every one of them because support of Israel, support of Jews, standing against anti-Semitism, has been bipartisan in the past it should be bipartisan today and should be bipartisan for every moment in the future. I yield back.

 
 
 

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