It’s been a rocky week for Democrats. Internally divided and conflicted over issues ranging from the border crisis to terrorism to national spending, here are three examples of recent leftist infighting.
1. White House Troubled by Harris’s Horrible Answer on Visiting the Border
Vice President Harris made headlines on Tuesday when she flippantly disregarded demands to visit the Southern border, equating a trip to the border with a trip to Europe. Even Harris’s colleagues in the White House weren’t pleased.
In an interview with NBC’s Lester Holt, Harris attempted to explain her response to the crisis. “At some point, you know, we are going to the border,” she asserted. “We’ve been to the border. So this whole, this whole, this whole thing about the border. We’ve been to the border.”
Holt pushed back. “You haven’t been to the border,” he reminded her.
Harris laughed: “I, and I haven’t been to Europe. And I mean, I don’t—I don’t understand the point you’re making.” Harris continued, “I’m not discounting the importance of the border.”
GOP clipped that section and has been blasting it out. pic.twitter.com/KQfFZ5VJH0
— Alex Thompson (@AlexThomp) June 8, 2021
Sources told CNN that some Biden administration officials were “quietly perplexed about what they perceive as [Harris’s] bumpy answers to questions about whether she will go to the [U.S.]-Mexico border.”
CNN continued its reporting, noting that “Several sources say there was a real hope inside the White House that Harris’[s] first trip abroad would be a success, and worry that what looked like ill-prepared answers to that inevitable question would overshadow it.”
Officials argue that one TV interview isn’t representative of Harris’s entire trip, but they worry that her “Europe sound bite” won’t be forgotten.
Harris now says she’ll visit the Southern border, but she hasn’t announced when. Presumably, she will also eventually visit Europe.
2. Rep. Omar Provides ‘Cover to Terrorist Groups’ and Dems Aren’t Having It
Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar infuriated Americans on Monday when she tweeted that “We have seen unthinkable atrocities committed by the U.S., Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban.” Even some of her fellow Democrats were frustrated by her comparison of the United States and Israel, two democratic countries, to terrorist organizations.
We must have the same level of accountability and justice for all victims of crimes against humanity.
We have seen unthinkable atrocities committed by the U.S., Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban.
— Rep. Ilhan Omar (@Ilhan) June 7, 2021
In response, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s leadership team released the following condemnation of Omar’s rhetoric:
— Jake Sherman (@JakeSherman) June 10, 2021
“Drawing false equivalences between democracies like the U.S. and Israel and groups that engage in terrorism like Hamas and the Taliban foments prejudice and undermines progress toward a future of peace and security for all,” leadership wrote.
This statement comes after 25 Jewish Democrats convened on Wednesday to discuss Omar, who they wanted to censure. They did not call Omar’s rhetoric antisemitic, but they were nonetheless outraged by it.
According to the Times of Israel, many Jewish lawmakers “want[ed] to name Omar in a statement saying that her claim ‘discredited’ the party.” Other lawmakers were nervous about such an unprecedented statement.
Following Omar’s rhetoric (and prior to the joint statement made by Pelosi’s leadership team), Democrats in the House of Representatives did indeed release a statement criticizing her tweet.
Group of House Democrats is out with a statement tonight condemning Ilhan Omar’s recent comments, saying they “give cover to terrorist groups.” pic.twitter.com/kDxSkb7OCi
— Andrew Desiderio (@AndrewDesiderio) June 10, 2021
“Equating the United States and Israel to Hamas and the Taliban is as offensive as it is misguided,” the statement read.
“Ignoring the difference between democracies governed by the rule of law and contemptible organizations that engage in terrorism at best discredits one’s intended argument and at worst reflects deep-seated prejudice,” the statement continues.
The statement concedes that the United States and Israel are obviously “imperfect, and, like all democracies, at times deserving of critique.” But the statement asserts that “false equivalences give cover to terrorist groups.”
The statement demands that “Congressman Omar […] clarify her words placing the US and Israel in the same category as Hamas and the Taliban.”
Omar responded to her colleagues’ initial statement by calling it “offensive” and “islamophobic.”
3. AOC Critiques Biden’s Trillion-dollar Spending Proposals As Not Spending Enough
New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wants President Joe Biden to hurry up and spend more money. This comes after Biden’s administration has already suggested over a trillion dollars in national spending.
On Wednesday, Ocasio-Cortez tweeted that “the Senate blockages make Biden’s unwillingness to act on student loan debt—something he can do *without* Congress but hasn’t yet—all the more glaring.” She continued, “#CancelStudentDebt is 1 of the few, rare opportunities Biden has to go big w/o the Senate. He needs to take it.”
Additionally, the Senate blockages make Biden’s unwillingness to act on student loan debt- something he can do *without* Congress but hasn’t yet- all the more glaring.#CancelStudentDebt is 1 of the few, rare opportunities Biden has to go big w/o the Senate. He needs to take it.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) June 9, 2021
Ocasio-Cortez has previously suggested there are ways to sneakily enable the government to pay student loans, without burdensome media attention:
“There is a provision that feels like an Easter egg which I think gives us some hope because not only are college students going to get stimulus checks that they didn’t get last year, but…there is a tax provision tucked away that says, ‘If your student loans get cancelled… you don’t have to pay taxes on that cancellation…it will not be treated as though the government gave you money for you to pay off your loans.’”
Ocasio-Cortez has no sympathy for Biden’s failure to pay up.