House Dems Plan Vote on Rep. Omar’s Islamophobia Bill

Progressives sought to remove Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., from committee assignments, but short of that goal, House Democrats did move Thursday to schedule a Tuesday vote on a bill to create a new State Department office tasked with combating Islamophobia.

Boebert apologized to Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., for remarks suggesting the Muslim member of Congress could be a terrorist, and progressive Squad members sought to make Boebert the third Republican to be kicked off House committees this year.

House Democrat leaders did announce they would vote Tuesday on Omar’s bill to address Islamophobia, The Hill reported.

Another Muslim Democrat in the House, Rep. André Carson, D-Ind., is continuing talks for a punishing response to Boebert.

“We don’t know yet,” Carson told The Hill, when asked if the Omar bill is the limit to the Democrats’ response to Boebert. “We remain hopeful.”

Members of the progressive Squad have introduced a resolution to strip Boebert from committee assignments, which House Democrats have already done to Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., and Paul Gosar, R-Ariz.

“Without meaningful accountability, we risk normalizing this unacceptable behavior & endangering the lives of our Muslim colleagues, Muslim staffers & any Muslim who calls America home,” Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., tweeted. “I stand w/ every staffer calling on House leadership to take action.”

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., added Wednesday: “We have a responsibility to show this country that bigotry is unacceptable.”

Democrats are leery that forcing another removal of a Republican from House committees would amplify Boebert’s remarks, according to The Hill, and potentially lead to fundraising for the Republican.

Omar’s bill creates a special envoy for monitoring and combating Islamophobia who would lead a new State Department office to address the rise in anti-Muslim incidents worldwide.

“We are seeing a rise in Islamophobia in nearly every corner of the globe,” Omar said. “In my home state of Minnesota, vandals spray-painted hate messages and a Nazi swastika on and near the Moorhead Fargo Islamic Center. These types of incidents are all too common for Muslims in the United States and beyond.

“As part of our commitment to international religious freedom and human rights, we must recognize Islamophobia and do all we can to eradicate it. That’s why I’m proud to partner with Rep. Jan Schakowsky to create a special envoy to put an end to this bigotry.”

Boebert apologized for House floor remarks calling Omar a member of the “jihad squad” and having suggested Omar might have been mistaken for a terrorist.

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