President Donald Trump asserted Friday that Rep. Ilhan Omar is “lucky to be where she is,” again accusing the Minnesota Democrat and Somali refugee of hating the United States and extending his sustained attack on a group of progressive freshman congresswomen.
“I’m unhappy with the fact that a congresswoman can hate our country. I’m unhappy with the fact that a congresswoman can say anti-Semitic things,” Trump told reporters in the Oval Office.
Story Continued Below
“I’m unhappy when a congresswoman goes and said, ‘I’m going to be the president’s nightmare.’ She’s going to be ‘the president’s nightmare.’ She’s lucky to be where she is, let me tell you,” he continued. “And the things that she has said are a disgrace to our country.”
Trump’s suggestion that Omar — who immigrated to the U.S. with her family in the early 1990s and became a citizen in 2000 when she was 17 years old — should be grateful to be in America marks his latest ambush on the lawmaker.
Beginning Sunday, the president has leveled incendiary broadsides against her and three other high-profile House Democrats — Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan — repeatedly declaring the women of color should “go back” to their countries of origin and questioning their patriotism.
But of that quartet of congresswomen, Trump has increasingly singled out Omar, launching into a vitriolic critique of her past controversial statements at a campaign rally Wednesday night that goaded the audience into chants of “send her back.”
Earlier Friday, Trump accused the media of siding with Omar and the other lawmakers with whom he has feuded this week, slamming journalists’ coverage of his rally in Greenville, North Carolina.
“It is amazing how the Fake News Media became ‘crazed’ over the chant ‘send her back’ by a packed Arena (a record) crowd in the Great State of North Carolina, but is totally calm & accepting of the most vile and disgusting statements made by the three Radical Left Congresswomen,” the president tweeted.
“Mainstream Media, which has lost all credibility, has either officially or unofficially become a part of the Radical Left Democrat Party,” he continued. “It is a sick partnership, so pathetic to watch!”
The president on Thursday said he “was not happy” with the chant and falsely claimed he “started speaking very quickly” in an attempt to silence the audience. In fact, Trump paused and turned away from the microphone as the crowd yelled, allowing the refrain to build up inside the arena.
Trump’s disavowal came after statements of disgust from several congressional Republicans over the rally display, as well as a meeting Thursday morning in which House GOP leadership conveyed their concerns to Vice President Mike Pence.
Upon her return to Minnesota on Thursday evening, Omar was met by a throng of supporters at a Twin Cities airport chanting, “Welcome home, Ilhan.”
“When I said I was the hope of the United States, it’s because I embody what that hope should look like. And when I said I was the president’s nightmare, well, you’re watching it now,” Omar said through a megaphone, addressing the more-than-100 people gathered near the baggage claim area.
“Because his nightmare is seeing a Somali immigrant refugee rise to Congress,” she continued. “His nightmare is seeing the beautiful mosaic fabric of our country welcome someone like me as their member of Congress home to Minnesota.”
Trump tweeted Friday about the homecoming, writing online of members of the media: “They even covered a tiny staged crowd as they greeted Foul Mouthed Omar in Minnesota.”
Trump went on to argue that he will win the state in next year’s presidential election “because they can’t stand her and her hatred of our Country, and they appreciate all that I have done for them (opening up mining and MUCH more) which has led to the best employment & economic year in Minnesota’s long and beautiful history!”