The name is enough to make us scared of the Squad. I suppose that’s the point. It conjures up some of the same terrible images used against Trump:
Georgia Congressman Hank Johnson isn’t apologizing for a recent speech that drew parallels between President Donald Trump and Adolf Hitler, and he says the chorus of critics who have assailed him for the comparison are missing the underlying point of his remarks.1
We know what the point is. This is the worst, most hateful symbol the party can come up with. It’s hardly the first time Democrats threw the Hitler card at this administration:
Sean Spicer used the White House Press Briefing Room as a stage from which to downplay Adolf Hitler’s crimes against humanity.2
What’s so offensive here is that none of our elected officials would even consider downplaying this chapter in history or giving an agreeable nod to Nazi Germany. They will accuse each other, but this is so grossly off limits that no one is going to do it. Instead Democratic lawmakers misconstrue, misinterpret, take out of context, and outright lie to get their hateful message about Trump to the people.
That doesn’t mean Democrats can’t have some fun accusing others of doing it or making comparisons between the Trump administration and Nazi Germany.
It doesn’t mean that equally off limits remarks aren’t embraced when they come from far left of center activists like the Squad, either.
Equitable outrage from the Squad? Not really.
In a June 22, 2019 press release Squad members Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) referred to ICE and CBP as criminal agencies.3 They want the American people to share in their anger:
We must be equitable in our outrage.4
Days before that Rep. Ocasio-Cortez used the Hitler analogy by comparing Nazi concentration camps to U.S. border facilities.
That’s a pretty offensive comparison considering the appalling scope of what happened in Europe, but divisive, attention-getting politics demands that this is how far the envelope must be pushed.
While every detail of the lives of Donald Trump and his family are dissected in hopes of finding the elusive smoking gun Mueller’s testimony did not provide, a second Squad member’s frightening remark before she was elected slipped past an adoring national media and most Democrats unacknowledged:
Representative Ilhan Omar, who also supports the BDS movement, tweeted, “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel.”5
It’s not Ms. Omar’s shocking comment that is so frightening. It’s that she still found enough support in her district to win an election because voters either didn’t know or worse, didn’t care.
That’s pretty scary to contemplate, especially in light of Omar’s “some people did something” remark about 9/11.
Our ally Israel didn’t fare much better in the hands of Rep. Tlaib:
Representative Tlaib, who stated on January 6, 2019, of Americans who support Israel, “They forgot what country they represent.”6
Don’t fear the Squad. Fear this.
What we should really fear from the Squad as a group and as individual congresswomen is that they are emblematic of a new Democratic politics that pushes beyond the limits of our values.
The opportunistic use of the “women of color” label to defend their words and actions and throw the race card at Trump misses the real threat behind their minority status.
Forget color: this minority is the real threat
I’m tired of hearing about four women of color. I don’t care what color they are. It scares me that they are a minority, but not in the way Democrats want us to think.
Race is irrelevant. It dodges the real problem: four inexperienced, extremist politicians out of 535 in Congress bullied their way to the top of our national political discussion even though their chief contribution is what Democrats accuse Trump of doing: inciting division.
That divisiveness includes Rep. Omar’s new effort to stomp down on Israel. Her pro-BDS H.Res. 496 declares opposition to boycott resolutions and:
opposes unconstitutional legislative efforts to limit the use of boycotts to further civil rights at home and abroad;
Two Squad members bought into this legislation: Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley (author’s note: Rep. Ocasio-Cortez joined her Squad and signed on as a cosponsor after this post was published on July 25, 2019). Ironically, The Hill reports that Rep. Pressley voted for H.Res. 246, “Opposing efforts to delegitimize the State of Israel and the Global Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions Movement targeting Israel.”
The other three Squad members voted against H.Res. 246.
H.R. 1837 push back
Fortunately not everyone in Minnesota agrees with Representative Omar. Fellow Democrats Collin Peterson, Dean Phillips, and Angie Craig cosponsored H.R. 1837, the United States-Israel Cooperation Enhancement and Regional Security Act. The 292 cosponsors for this legislation are almost evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans.
No Squad members are among them.
Attack politics: it’s not just the Squad
The Squad is frequently huddled together in front of media cameras, but there is still mischief to indulge individually to push an agenda that includes targeting members of the Trump administration.
When Americans object we are vilified as Trump supporters while political opponents are targeted for elimination:
Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Congresswoman Katie Porter (D-CA) today sent a letter to Kathleen Kraninger, Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), urging the CFPB to reconsider its continued employment of Paul Watkins as the Assistant Director of the Office of Innovation after a report this week revealed that Mr. Watkins previously served as a senior counsel for an anti-LGBTQ hate group, Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF.)7
The “report” referred to appears on the Allied Progress website. The watchdog organization has a page dedicated to exposes about Trump Administration officials and nominees.8
There is nothing equitable about condemning all but left of center political discourse and turning divide and destroy into the mantra for bullying extremist political might. That means Democrats are at risk, too. To force the Squad’s brand of extremism through a complacent House the message is that we need to take down a few Democrats, too.
When the extremism of the minority finds support we have something to fear. Remember, 94 Democrats in the House have already bought into Ocasio-Cortez’s Green Deal socialism.
Trump pro-American remarks are more credible than the Squad’s divisiveness
Yes, Donald Trump shoots his mouth off. It’s a bad habit. His Twitter outbursts don’t always serve him or his administration very well.
That doesn’t mean there isn’t truth behind what he says despite a complicit media that quickly turned alleged racist remarks into unquestionably racist remarks.
During a July 19, 2019 press conference the president had an opportunity to defend his words:
And then you have these people — I think that Omar — I find it hard to believe — but I hear Omar today put in, or yesterday put in a sanctions bill against Israel, and other things beyond sanctions. So, when I hear that, you just can’t talk about our country that way. And when people are angry at them, I fully understand them.9
Undermining Mideast policy while the Iran tinderbox smolders does not serve American interests. Neither does portraying a valued ally as an enemy, but that’s how divide and destroy politics works.
More Dems attack: profiting from the presidency?
During that July press conference the president was asked how he would feel if someone told the First Lady to go back to her country, as if attacks on his family were something unusual. The anti-Trump free-for-all has involved his family members – including his young son – from the first days of this presidency.
In March 2019 Congressman Ruben Gallego joined five Democratic colleagues to accuse Trump’s family of profiting from the presidency.10 Gallego claims:
Donald Trump and his family are lining their pockets with taxpayer dollars.10
Extremist Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) echoed Gallego’s remark. He also accused Trump’s family of “lining their pockets at taxpayer expense.”11
Congressman Jamie Raskin (D-MD) joined in:
Government in democracy is for the common good but government in a dictatorship is a money-making operation for the ruler and his family and friends. Which one are we going to be?” said Rep. Jamie Raskin. “Let’s have some transparency in Trump’s spending so we can restore some real accountability in our society.”12
The democracy card is another familiar ploy from a party embracing socialism. The unfortunate truth is that the Democratic Party is complicit in the extremism promoted by the Squad, its followers and enablers, and the left of center’s determination to tear this country apart. This is why you should be scared of the Squad. They demonstrate the opportunity for extremism to gain a footing and the failure of conventional politics to stop it.
Last week popular media outlets treated the nation to images of jeering Trump supporters listening to his “go back” remarks. They became emblematic of the racism allegedly promulgated by this president. Over and over again we heard derogatory references to Trump’s base.
Democrats pretend to be completely oblivious as to why the angry push back.
After Trump’s rally:
U.S. Rep. Brenda Lawrence of Southfield, said ”Divisive rhetoric will NEVER ‘Make America Great Again.'”13
Then tell the Squad and the Democrats who support them to stop it.
UPDATE July 26, 2019: anti-Israel retort: Congress says no to extremists
The 398-17 House vote on H.Res. 246 was overwhelmingly positive with the exception of 17 nays that included some familiar far left names: Blumenauer, Grijalva, Jayapal, Pocan, and the three Squad members already mentioned who opposed this bill.
To be clear, among other things they voted against:
U.S. refusal to target Israel;
The Constitutional right of United Citizens to free speech;
Support for an Israeli-Palestinian negotiated solution.
Rep. Omar’s H.R. 496 comparison of the boycotts of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan to her anti-Israel, pro-BDS stance is less disturbing than the fact that this resolution actually made its way into our legislative history, albeit with no chance of passage.
Capitol Hill extremists already threaten socialist warfare against the American economy with Ocasio-Cortez’s Green Deal. Now an economic battleground abroad is being plotted by a handful of congressional anti-Israel miscreants, but the scope of the boycott movement is about more than Israel.
Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-MO) issued a warning Americans should heed:
I am alarmed by the statements of some Members of Congress who promote and endorse the BDS movement. The United States must be a leader in opposing this discriminatory economic warfare against Israel.14
We also need to oppose discriminatory economic warfare against the United States by its elected officials. Endorsing boycotts as a substitute for legitimate political processes is a dangerous precedent to set, whether applied around the globe or here at home.
This is how the tyranny of the minority gains power. It only takes a handful to get things rolling.
UPDATE August 16, 2019: Israel stands up to pro-BDS Tlaib and Omar. Democrats cry foul.
After their acceptance of anti-Semitic remarks from Squad Reps. Omar and Tlaib it’s no surprise that Democrats were incensed over Israel slamming the door on a visit by the two pro-BDS congresswomen. This is another contrived opportunity to point a finger at Trump while missing the obvious: no one in the U.S. has the right to enter any country if that country says no.
It’s not as if Tlaib and Omar have given Israel a plethora of reasons to say yes.
This is an ironic reversal of roles. The anti-Semitic, pro-Palestinian nation-building rhetoric the Democratic House turns a blind eye to when it comes from Squad members Tlaib and Omar is the sort of thing we like to blame Republicans for. Liberal blinders and the cowardice lawmakers have shown in not standing up to the Squad make it easy to tolerate.
The take home message is that other countries don’t have to put up with our hateful nonsense, especially when they are the brunt of the joke.
Now we hear that Tlaib will get in. Let’s see if she behaves herself or manages to embarrass us yet again.
UPDATE October 11, 2019: where are AOC’s press releases?
Congressional politicians love to be heard. One way to do this is to issue lots of press releases where they can pat themselves on the back and make remarks to stir the political pot. For better or worse it’s an easy, cheap way to communicate where they stand to the public.
The Squad is no exception, or at last it’s not an exception for Reps. Tlaib, Omar, and Pressley.
Ms. Tlaib recently jumped on the impeachment train and followed the lead of other Democrats by suggesting the president had committed crimes even though he has never been indicted, much less convicted:
From the first day of this session, I’ve called to uphold our nation’s law of the land, our United States Constitution. This means impeaching the President for his criminal and impeachable offenses.15
Kudos to Rep. Tlaib. This is a picture perfect example of how to do a congressional press release. It includes praise and damnation all in one neat, carefully worded package.
Rep. Ilhan Omar knows how to do this, too. Her recent press releases include statements on Kashmir, Israel, Eritrea, and Ghana.16
Rep. Pressley? Same thing. She recently referred to Trump’s troop withdrawal from Northern Syria as “cruel and sickening.”17
Great job, Congresswoman Pressley. This is exactly what Democratic Party press releases are for. Your party loves the word “cruel,” though usually it’s in reference to enforcing the law here at home, so you should use it as often as possible.
How about AOC? Nothing. Nada. Zip. She doesn’t issue press releases or if she does, they are nowhere to be found on her congressional stump site.
That must be perplexing for her district, assuming those who decided that putting her in office was a smart decision can read. Perhaps the congresswoman doesn’t want to be held to her words. It’s a lot easier to stir the pot in social media. It appeals to America’s post-literate set and to be fair, the president has considerable experience in this venue as well.
The nation is listening, congresswoman. You already have our attention. Indulge us.
1. “Hank Johnson defends comments comparing Trump to Hitler.” Hank Johnson. January 14, 2019. https://hankjohnson.house.gov/media-center/in-the-news/hank-johnson-defends-comments-comparing-trump-hitler, retrieved July 21, 2019.
2. “Schakowsky statement on Sean Spicer’s revisionist history.” Jan Schakowsky. April 11, 2017. https://schakowsky.house.gov/common/popup/popup.cfm?action=item.print&itemID=3457, retrieved July 23, 2019.
3. “Progressive Congresswomen Slam ICE and CBP: Not One More Dollar.” Rashida Tlaib. June 22, 2019. https://tlaib.house.gov/media/press-releases/progressive-congresswomen-slam-ice-and-cbp-not-one-more-dollar, retrieved June 22, 2019.
5. “Reps. Zeldin, Stefanik, Budd Introducing Resolution Today Condemning Anti-Israel, Anti-Semitic Hatred Infiltrating U.S. Politics and Congress.” Lee Zeldin. January 23, 2019. https://zeldin.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/reps-zeldin-stefanik-budd-introducing-resolution-today-condemning-anti, retrieved July 20, 2019.
7. “Rep. Pressley, Senator Warren, and Rep. Porter Denounce High-Level CFPB Staffer with History of Working for Anti-LGBTQ Hate Group.” Ayanna Pressley. June 25, 2019. https://pressley.house.gov/media/press-releases/rep-pressley-senator-warren-and-rep-porter-denounce-high-level-cfpb-staffer, retrieved July 21, 2019.
8. “Trump Administration.” Allied Progress. https://alliedprogress.org/campaigns/trump/, retrieved July 21, 2019.
9. “Remarks by President Trump Before Marine One Departure.” Whitehouse.gov. July 19, 2019. https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/remarks-president-trump-marine-one-departure-53/, retrieved July 21, 2019.
10. “How much money has gone directly from the Treasury into Trump family bank accounts?” Ruben Gallego. March 5, 2019. https://rubengallego.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/how-much-money-has-gone-directly-treasury-trump-family-bank-accounts, retrieved July 21, 2019.
13. “Leave the U.S., Trump tells Tlaib, 3 Dem congresswomen of color.” Brenda Lawrence. July 14, 2019. https://lawrence.house.gov/media-center/in-the-news/leave-us-trump-tells-tlaib-3-dem-congresswomen-color, retrieved July 22, 2019.
14. “Hartzler Supports Bills Backing Israel.” Vicky Hartzler. July 25, 2019. https://hartzler.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/hartzler-supports-bills-backing-israel, retrieved July 26, 2019.
15. “Congresswoman Tlaib Statement on Impeachment Professional in the House.” Rashida Tlaib. September 24, 2019. https://tlaib.house.gov/media/press-releases/congresswoman-tlaib-statement-impeachment-progression-house, retrieved October 11, 2019.
16. “Press Releases.” Ilhan Omar. https://omar.house.gov/media/press-releases, retrieved October 11, 2019.
17. “Rep. Pressley Statement on U.S. Troop Withdrawal From Syria.” Ayanna Pressley. October 9, 2019. https://pressley.house.gov/media/press-releases/rep-pressley-statement-us-troop-withdrawal-syria, retrieved October 11, 2019.
*Image: President Donald J. Trump visits Suresnes American Cemetery located outside Paris, as part of Veterans Day and commemorations marking the 100th anniversary of the Nov. 11, 1918 armistice that ended World War I, Nov. 11, 2018. DOD photo by Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Dominique A. Pineiro, retrieved from https://dod.defense.gov/News/Article/Article/1689646/us-leaders-salute-fallen-heroes-on-armistice-day-centennial-in-france/ on July 25, 2019.