The US politician Ilhan Omar played a harrowing death threat left recently on her voicemail, as she implored House Republican leaders to do more to tamp down “anti-Muslim hatred” in their ranks and “hold those who perpetuate it accountable”.
The Democratic Minnesota representative, one of only a handful of Muslim members of Congress, has been the subject of repeated attacks by conservative pundits and some 共和党人 in Congress, which she says have led to an increase in the number of death threats she receives.
Recently a video of the first-term Colorado representative Lauren Boebert calling Omar a member of the “jihad squad” and likening her to a bomb-carrying terrorist went viral.
“When a sitting member of Congress calls a colleague a member of the ‘jihad squad’ and falsifies a story to suggest I will blow up the Capitol, it is not just an attack on me but on millions of American Muslims across the country,” Omar said during a news conference on Tuesday.
“We cannot pretend this hate speech from leading politicians doesn’t have real consequences.”
She then played the voicemail, laden with profanity, racial epithets and a threat to “take you off the face of the fucking earth”, which she said was among hundreds of such messages she has reported since joining Congress. Omar said the voicemail was left for her after Boebert released another video on Monday criticising her.
In the grainy recording, a man can be heard saying: “You will not be living much longer, bitch,” and that “we the people are rising up”. He calls Omar a “traitor” and says she will stand trial before a military tribunal.
Omar said: “It is time for the Republican party to actually do something to confront anti-Muslim hatred in its ranks and hold those who perpetuate it accountable.”
Boebert’s remarks were the latest example of a Republican lawmaker making a personal attack against another member of Congress, an unsettling trend that has gone largely unchecked by House Republican leaders.
A video posted to Facebook last week showed Boebert speaking at an event and describing an interaction with Omar – an interaction that Omar maintains never happened.
In the video, Boebert claims that a Capitol police officer approached her with “fret on his face” shortly before she stepped into a House elevator and the doors closed. “I look to my left and there she is, Ilhan Omar. And I said: '出色地, she doesn’t have a backpack. We should be fine,’” Boebert says with a laugh.
Omar called on the House Speaker, 南希佩洛西, and the Republican minority leader, Kevin McCarthy, to “take appropriate action”. But so far McCarthy, who is in line to become Speaker if Republicans retake the majority next year, has been reluctant to police members of his caucus whose views often closely align with those of the party’s base.
Boebert initially took steps to ease the situation, apologising last week “to anyone in the Muslim community I offended”. But after declining to apologise directly to Omar during a tense phone call 在星期一, which Omar abruptly ended, Boebert again went on the attack.
“Rejecting an apology and hanging up on someone is part of cancel culture 101 and a pillar of the Democrat party,” Boebert said in an Instagram video.
迄今为止, McCarthy is taking her side. When asked on Tuesday what he would do if 民主党 tried to censure Boebert, McCarthy said: “After she apologised personally and publicly? I’d vote against it.”