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Progressive Rep. Jayapal’s controversial comments about Israel garner disapproval from Democrats

A progressive US representative made controversial remarks about Israel days before the country’s president, Isaac Herzog, addressed Congress.

Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D.W.A.), chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucuses, later retracted her description of Israel as a “racist state.”

“Words matter, so it’s important to be clear about what you’re saying,” she said in a statement. an apology was made Sunday. “I don’t think the idea of ​​an Israeli state is racist.”

“But I believe that[Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s]far-right government has a discriminatory and blatantly racist policy, and there are extreme racists in the leadership of the current government who promote that policy. I believe,” he added.

“These are not easy conversations, but they are important conversations for us to move forward,” she concluded. “In that spirit, I apologize to those I have hurt with my words and offer this explanation.”

Congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle spoke out against Jayapal’s comments.

Democrats condemn Jayapal comments, McCarthy calls for disciplinary action

A group of 43 Democrats made the announcement. letter condemned her “unacceptable comments” against historical and democratic allies.

“Israel remains the only vibrant, progressive and inclusive democracy in the region,” the letter said. “Pluralism thrives in Israel.”

“We will never allow the anti-Zionist voices that bolster anti-Semitism to undermine and disrupt the strong bipartisan agreement that has stood for decades of U.S.-Israel relations. .”

The letter says Jayapal’s comments undermine US national security. “Israel remains our greatest partner for Middle East peace,” the paper said.

House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries, along with Democratic House Leader Catherine Clarke and other Democratic caucus leaders, statement“Israel is not a racist state.”

“Certainly, there are members of the current Israeli coalition that we strongly oppose,” the statement said.

“Government officials come and go. The special relationship between the United States and Israel will continue.”

The leadership added that it looked forward to welcoming Israeli President Herzog this week.according to The Hillhis speech will mark the 75th anniversary of his nation’s founding and celebrate the relationship between the United States and Israel.

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said: reporter On Monday, Jeffries insisted action must be taken against Jayapal.

“I think this is the role of leader Hakeem. No, they’re not anti-Semitic, they just can’t allow members to keep saying what they’ve said in the past,” he said. Told. Said.

Progressives protest against Herzog’s speech

Jayapal said CNN She did not attend Mr. Herzog’s speech to Congress, saying “now is not a good time” for Mr. McCarthy to invite Israeli leaders.

Other progressive Democrats, including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Rep. Jamal Bowman of New York and Rep. Cori Bush of Missouri, also said they would not attend. .

Jayapal’s first remarks came at a Netroots Nation conference in Chicago on Saturday, where she said she was trying to quell disturbances by pro-Palestinian protesters.

“Hey guys, can I say something? As someone who has been on the streets and participated in many demonstrations, what can I say?” NBC News. “I want you to know that Israel is a racist state, that Palestinians deserve self-determination and autonomy, that the dream of a two-state solution is fading away from us, and that Palestinians are a people. It means that we have fought to make it clear that we are a racist state.

On the other hand, progressive Rep. Lo Khanna (Democrat, California) Said He was due to attend Herzog’s speech, adding that upon meeting he felt the Israeli president was “much more moderate and liberal”.

https://www.deseret.com/2023/7/17/23797830/rep-jayapal-called-israel-a-racist-state Progressive Rep. Jayapal’s controversial comments about Israel garner disapproval from Democrats

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