White House press secretary Karin Jean-Pierre blasted House Republicans on Thursday for voting to remove Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar from the Foreign Affairs Committee, arguing it was show action against a respected member of Congress.
Republicans had tried to remove Ms. Omar from the powerful House panel for interpreting past comments as anti-Semitic. In 2019, she tweeted that Republicans wanted to condemn her comments about Israel “all for the Benjamins, baby.”
Ms. Omar’s quote was a reference to a 1997 song by rapper Sean Combs, aka Diddy, whose title referred to Benjamin Franklin appearing on the $100 bill, which many believed was a reference to Common anti-Semitic tropes about the financing of Jewish money by American politicians.
Ms. Omar later apologized for her remarks, but House Speaker Kevin McCarthy still urged her removal.
Asked about the House’s actions at its daily news briefing, Ms. Jean-Pierre said the White House considers Ms. Omar a “well-respected member of Congress,” noting that the Minnesota congresswoman is apologized for her remarks during an appearance on CNN on Sunday.
“We view this as a political stunt, just as House Republicans have unjustly removed other key Democrats from key committees in recent weeks, as a disservice to the American people,” she said.
Mr. McCarthy’s push to remove Ms. Omar from the foreign affairs panel was largely seen as tit-for-tat retaliation for two Republicans who were removed from the committee by a full House vote during the last Congress.
In one such example, all Democrats and 11 Republicans voted to remove Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene for her racist, anti Statements of Judaism and conspiracy theories.
Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar posted a doctored animated video on social media depicting his murder of New York Democrat Alexandria Ocasio Cortez ), he was dismissed from office.
Earlier this year, Mr. McCarthy reinstated two Republican members on the committee.