Rep. Ilhan Omar was seen laughing Monday after being asked to condemn a recent antifa attack on an ICE facility in Washington state.
Rebel Media reporter Keean Bexte confronted the Minnesota congresswoman on video as she left the Capitol with fellow Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York. After the lawmakers climbed into the vehicle, Bexte tried one last time to get an answer.
“Will you condemn Antifa?” he asked Omar. “Do you feel like you have any sort of responsibility for their actions?”
Earlier in the one-and-a-half minute clip, which Bexte posted to Twitter, he asked Omar to specifically condemn the Saturday firebombing of the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington. When she refused to respond, Bexte noted that she has also stonewalled reporters’ queries about allegations that she married her brother in an attempt to fast-track his immigration to the United States.
“It kind of blew up in your face when you couldn’t respond about your brother,” Bexte said.
Bexte also questioned Ocasio-Cortez about whether she feels “responsible at all” for Antifa violence.
“Will you tell Americans not to be violent anymore?” he pressed. “Antifa to be exact.”
As the two lawmakers waited for staffers to close the doors of the SUV and drive off, the camera caught Omar laughing and leaning forward in her seat, coffee in hand.
The two freshmen progressives were apparently fresh out of outrage, having just held a press conference condemning President Donald Trump as a racist for suggesting in a series of tweets Sunday that they “go back” to the countries “from which they came.”
Why Ilhan Omar laughs off antifa
Whether Omar was laughing at Bexte or was just trying to ignore him, she was clearly not taking his questions seriously. Both she and Ocasio-Cortez have histories of selective outrage when it comes to violence.
They have been highly sensitive to right-wing terrorism against non-white people. But they have remained silent or even apologized for left-wing violence, from previous antifa attacks to government repression in Venezuela.
At the same time, the lawmakers have railed against immigration law enforcement agencies as irredeemably cruel and corrupt. Ocasio-Cortez has gone as far as to compare migrant detention centers to Nazi concentration camps and to dubiously claim that Border Patrol agents force detained migrants to drink out of toilets.
Tellingly, a manifesto said to have been left behind by Willem Van Spronsen – the man who attacked the ICE facility and was shot dead before he could hurt anyone – is filled with rhetoric that echoes Ocasio-Cortez’s.
“Evil says concentration camps for folks deemed lesser are necessary,” the document reads. “The handmaid of evil says the concentration camps should be more humane. Beware the centrist.”