Rep. Ilhan Omar gave a shoutout to fellow House of Representatives member Pete King, a Republican from New York, calling him an “Islamophobe” and rejoicing at his announcement that he won’t be seeking reelection in the upcoming 2020 election.
According to The Hill, Omar, who was one of the first Muslim women sworn into Congress after being elected in 2018, called out specific statements made by King about the Muslim community in general and Eric Garner in particular, during his time in Congress.
“Peter King is an Islamophobe who held McCarthyite hearings targeting American Muslims, said ‘there are too many mosques in this country’ and blamed Eric Garner for his own death at the hands of police,” she said in a tweet. “Good riddance.”
Peter King is an Islamophobe who held McCarthyite hearings targeting American Muslims, said “there are too many mosques in this country” and blamed Eric Garner for his own death at the hands of police.
Good riddance. https://t.co/cYZOrnaK2M
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) November 11, 2019
King, however, seemed unphased by Omar’s comments, telling The Hill that “considering the source, it is a great compliment.”
“King suggested in 2014 that the death of Garner, an African American man who died after being placed in a chokehold by a New York police officer during an arrest, stemmed from his obesity,” The Hill reported. “Video of the incident captured Garner saying, ‘I can’t breathe’ before dying, causing mass demonstrations throughout the U.S. against police brutality.”
A grand jury decided not to indict the police officer who was responsible for Garner’s death in December of last year, and King supported that decision.
“You had a 350-pound person who was resisting arrest. The police were trying to bring him down as quickly as possible,” King said on CNN according to The Hill. “If he had not had asthma and a heart condition and was so obese, almost definitely he would not have died from this. … The police had no reason to know he was in serious condition.”
With King’s announcement, there are now 20 Republicans who are retiring out of the House prior to the upcoming election. The outgoing New York representative told reporters
that there were “too many mosques in this country.”
“There are too many people sympathetic to radical Islam,” King, who once served as the House Homeland Security Committee chairman, said at the time. “We should be looking at them more carefully and finding out how we can infiltrate them.”
Written by Savannah Pointer.