Ilhan Omar Says Death Threats Have Surged Since Trump’s 9/11 Tweet

“We are all Americans. This is endangering lives. It has to stop.”

Alex Edelman/ZUMA

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In a statement late Sunday, Rep. Ilhan Omar revealed that she has been subjected to an increase in death threats in the wake of President Donald Trump’s tweet on Friday that combined remarks by the Minnesota Democrat with graphic images of the 9/11 attacks. 

The tweet, which remains on the president’s social media account, has drawn widespread condemnation. Critics have accused the president of using a video that lifted out of context comments Omar made during a Muslim civil rights event last month to make it appear as though she was trivializing the 9/11 attacks. 

“Since the president’s tweet Friday evening, I have experienced an increase in direct threats on my life—many directly referencing or replying to the president’s video,” Omar said. “Violent rhetoric and all forms of hate speech have no place in our society, much less from our country’s Commander in Chief.”

“We are all Americans,” she continued. “This is endangering lives. It has to stop.”

Omar’s statement came shortly after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi released her own statement on Sunday announcing that she had been in communication with US Capitol Police to “safeguard” Omar, one of the only two Muslim women in Congress. The top Democrat also called on Trump to remove the video, which she slammed as “hateful and inflammatory,” from his Twitter page.

One week before Trump’s video, law enforcement officials announced that a man describing himself as a Trump-loving patriot had been arrested for issuing a death threat against Omar. The president is scheduled to travel to Minnesota on Monday for an economic round table. 

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You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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