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    Rep.-elect Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., joins House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi of California and newly-elected members at a news conference to discuss their priorities when they assume the majority in the 116th Congress in January, at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Nov. 30, 2018

    ‘Mounting Frustrations’: Democrats Mull Primary Challenge Against Ilhan Omar

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    Ilhan Omar’s repeated claims that Jews are buying US politicians have fanned the flames of disapproval, even among her own fellow Minnesota Democrats.

    Minnesota Democrats are seriously considering challenging their Representative Ilhan Omar in the 2020 election over her recent anti-Jewish remarks.

    The practice of "primary challenge," when a party challenges its own incumbent office holder, is highly unusual in US politics and is largely discouraged, as it harms party unity and increases the chances of losing a seat to an opposing party.

    Democratic Party officials interviewed by The Hill said they have not yet decided on an alternative candidate, but "frustrations are mounting."

    "There's definitely some buzz going around about it, but it's more a buzz of is anyone talking about finding someone to run against her than it is anyone saying they're going to run against her or contemplate it," Minnesota State Sen. Ron Latz (D) said in an interview. "There's definitely talk about people wanting someone to run against her."

    Omar has been under fire over recent comments suggesting Jewish organizations pay US politicians to support Israel, which many viewed as anti-Semitic. Later, she repeated her assertions, saying Jewish organizations were pushing members of US Congress to have "allegiance to a foreign country," Fox News reports.

    Spokesman for the National Conference on Jewish Affairs (NCJA) Rabbi Aryeh Spero organized a "sit-in" protest at the office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi Thursday, calling for the censure of Omar and blasting Pelosi for her reluctance to do so.

    Steve Hunegs, the executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas, said that the community is "exasperated by Rep. Omar's unfulfilled promises to listen and learn from Jewish constituents while seemingly simultaneously finding another opportunity to make an anti-Semitic remark and insult our community."

    Last week, the House passed a bipartisan resolution condemning hate speech in the wake of Omar's comments. However, Democrats decided not to name Omar personally in the language of the resolution, which several Republicans opposed as a "watered-down, half-hearted effort," Fox News reports.

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    Tags:
    criticism, Anti-Semitism, challenge, re-election, US Democratic Party, Ilhan Omar, United States
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