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February 1, 2019 1:51 pm

New Pro-Israel Democratic Group Slams Congresswoman Over ‘Absurd’ Iran Comparison

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Ilhan Omar (D-MN) speaks to the media after a lottery for office assignments on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, November 30, 2018. Photo: Reuters / Joshua Roberts.

A new pro-Israel Democratic group called out Congresswoman Ilhan Omar on Friday over a comparison she made of the Jewish state to Iran.

Omar’s “recent description of Israeli democracy is biased and inaccurate, while her equating Israel, a democracy, to Iran, a theocracy, is absurd,” Mark Mellman — the president and CEO of Democratic Majority for Israel (DMFI) — said in a statement on Friday.

“Especially at a time when our president lies daily, Democratic members of Congress have a special responsibility to know the facts before they speak, and to tell the American people the truth,” he added. “In this instance Congresswoman Omar failed on both counts.”

In a Yahoo! News interview published earlier this week, the Minnesota representative said, “When I see Israel institute a law that recognizes it as a Jewish state and does not recognize the other religions that are living in it, and we still uphold it as a democracy in the Middle East, I almost chuckle, because I know that if we see that in any other society we would criticize it, we would call it out, we do that to Iran, we do that to any other place that sort of upholds its religion.”

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“And so I am aggravated, truly, in these contradictions,” she continued.

Also on Friday, Republican Congressman Lee Zeldin of New York accepted an invitation from Omar to come to her office for Somali tea and a discussion on religious discrimination.

This followed a back-and-forth Twitter exchange between the two ideologically-opposed legislators in recent days.

On Thursday, Zeldin, who is Jewish, tweeted to Omar a recording of an antisemitic voice message he had gotten, and asked her which part of it she disagreed with.

In response, Omar condemned the message as “heinous and hateful,” and noted that she, as a Muslim, had been on the receiving end of similar hate-filled invective.

“Maybe we could meet and share notes on how to fight religious discrimination of all kinds?”she asked. “Maybe over Somali tea, in your old office which I happen to be in now.”

Zeldin took her up on her offer, writing, “Let’s do that! Are you saying you disagree w/everything said in that voicemail? I sure do & it would be great if you did as well & cosponsored & helped #PassHRes72. That would be a step in the right direction.”

The bill Zeldin referred to condemns anti-Israel and antisemitic hatred in the US and around the world.

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