Linda Sarsour speaks onstage during the Women's March on Washington on January 21, 2017 in Washington, DC. .
(photo credit: THEO WARGO/GETTY IMAGES/AFP)
American political activist Linda Sarsour has bashed the newly-formed bi-partisan black-Jewish Congressional caucus in numerous tweets.
“Ah I see, @DWStweets didn’t want to march with the Women’s March citing 'bigotry,' but has no problem aligning & partnering with @leezeldin, a notorious anti-Arab, anti-Palestinian, anti-Muslim bigot who also targeted a Black Muslim Congresswoman. We know the truth. This is a joke,” Sarsour first tweeted on June 4.
She quoted the tweet by the American Jewish Committee that announced the caucus and its founders, who include Reps. Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.) and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.), as well as Reps. Brenda Lawrence (D-Mich.), Will Hurd (R-Texas) and John Lewis, (D-Ga.). The later is a revered veteran of the 1960s civil rights marches.
The caucus was launched after a meeting convened by the American Jewish Committee in January. It aims to bring Blacks and Jews together to back hate crimes legislation and combat White supremacist ideology and actions.
Following the first tweet, Sarsour retweeted and/or wrote several messages accusing Zeldin of targeting Muslim Congresswomen Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib.
Later in the week, Omar joined the caucus, as confirmed by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency in a message from the Minnesota Democrat’s spokesman, Jeremy Slevin.
In February, Omar drew wide condemnation for a tweet in which she seemed to say that US support for Israel had to do with donations from the pro-Israel lobby. Many said the tweet drew on antisemitic tropes about Jewish influence and money. Previously, she drew criticism for a 2012 tweet, in which she said that Israel had “hypnotized” the world.
After Omar’s decision, AJC Assistant Executive Director Avi Mayer, who had previously harshly criticized Sarsour for her opposition to the initiative, directly called on her to support the caucus.
“Linda, you repeatedly invoked @IlhanMN as your supposed reason for opposing this caucus that will bring Black and Jewish legislators together in common cause. Now that Rep. Omar has endorsed it without reservation, will you?” he wrote in a tweet.
“Absolutely not. Anything that has Lee Zeldin in it’s leadership will never get my endorsement. I don’t base my support on someone else’s support. I base my support on facts and my analysis. Lee Zeldin is a bigot and you can’t convince me otherwise,” Sarsour responded.
Her response was reinforced by Ilhan Omar.
“Just to be clear, my endorsement of the caucus and willingness to unite our communities against the threats of White supremacy isn’t an endorsement of Zeldin’s bigotry! Linda’s point still remains valid but my hope here is that Zeldin can learn and grow,” Omar wrote in a tweet.
Her tweet was commented on by Zeldin.
“This new Caucus is a positive, bipartisan push to build bridges between 2 groups. Be helpful, accurate & better. Unite; don’t divide or try to poison like this latest personal attack. This is bigger than us & we have to be better than this,” he wrote.
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