Trump hypocritically calls on Rep. Omar to resign — but the backlash was immediate and fierce
President Donald Trump called for Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) to resign during a press availability on Tuesday after the freshman congresswoman drew criticism for a tweet criticizing lobbying for Israel. Omar has since apologized for the tweet, given its propensity to feed anti-Semitic stereotypes — but Trump's call for her to resign was wildly hypocritical in light of his own history.
As recently as this weekend, Trump made a joke about the genocide of Native Americans in an attack on Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). This slur was criticized by many observers, but it inspired far less attention and drew far less public condemnation than Omar's remarks, despite the president's much higher profile and the fact that his tweet was arguably much more insidious.
Trump has also famously engaged in a wild campaign of vitriolic Islamophic misinformation, attacks that target Omar as a Muslim. He has even taken this bigotry into the realm of policymaking, ordering a ban on immigrants from predominantly Muslim countries. He has never come close to apologizing for any of this behavior and instead counterattacks any time he is called out on it.
And perhaps most egregiously, Trump is guilty of embracing exactly the kind of anti-Semitic tropes that Omar apologized for — and again, he's never backed down from these slurs.
On Twitter, commentators were quick to argue that, if Trump was serious about his call for Omar to resign, it must mean he, and many others in his party, would also be required to do so.
If Trump wants to establish a norm that people who say things deemed to be racist must resign, he can set an example today by resigning.— emptywheel (@emptywheel)1549995437.0
If Omar's tweets are the reason for this call to resign, then let's do the same for every Republican that used "glo… https://t.co/bQS96wt3hp— Wajahat "Wears a Mask Because of a Pandemic" Ali (@Wajahat "Wears a Mask Because of a Pandemic" Ali)1549997122.0
Trump NEVER COMMENTED on Steve King embracing white nationalism. Trump NEVER APOLOGIZED for saying participants in… https://t.co/8NBglRLHOh— Judd Legum (@Judd Legum)1549995078.0
In light of Trump calling on Omar to resign, a notable contrast highlighted by WaPo: At a Republican Jewish Coaliti… https://t.co/0gEmLTz1jQ— Kyle Griffin (@Kyle Griffin)1549993808.0
If that is the standard we are setting, than President Trump must resign as well. His anti-semitic and xenophobic r… https://t.co/itVJYJdlBK— Carly Pildis (@Carly Pildis)1549995811.0