Lauren Boebert sparks outcry after claiming Ilhan Omar faked tears over racist attacks: ‘This is disgusting and vile’

Colorado Republican previously apologised ‘to anyone in the Muslim community I offended’

Andrew Buncombe
Monday 20 December 2021 21:34 GMT
Lauren Boebert says Ilhan Omar faked tears and 'played victim' over racist attacks

Lauren Boebert has sparked outcry after claiming Ilhan Omar faked tears and “played the victim”, barely a month after apologising over a comment widely considered racist and Islamophobic.

A month after the Colorado Republican issued an apology to anyone in the Muslim community offended by her words, she accused the Democrat of playing the victim in order to help her fundraising efforts.

“She needed more fundraising for this quarter. This quarter was a little slow for her,” she said. “So let’s go on TV, shed some tears, and you know, play the victim.”

Ms Boebert, a favourite among the more hardline member of the Republican Party and who frequently poses with one of her guns, made the comments as an interview before going on stage at an event in Arizona, organised by Turning Point USA, a youth conservative student movement for “freedom, free markets and limited government”.

Last month, Ms Boebert issued an apology – though without naming Ms Omar – after she likened the Democrat to a bomb-carrying terrorist.

She even called Mr Omar to speak with her, but according to both camps, the call did not go well.

In a statement, Ms Omar, one of the first two Muslim women to be elected to Congress, said that Ms Boebert “refused to publicly acknowledge her hurtful and dangerous comment”.

She said: “She instead doubled down on her rhetoric and I decided to end the unproductive call.”

In turn, Ms Boebert said she had told Ms Omar: “I have reflected on my previous remarks, now as a strong Christian woman who values faith deeply I never want anything I say to offend someone's religion.”

She confirmed Ms Omar had asked for a public apology – and that instead she had challenged Omar to issue an apology of her own for some of the comments she has made in the past.

“I will fearlessly continue to put America first, never sympathising with terrorists,” Ms Boebert said.

“Unfortunately Ilhan can't say the same thing and our country is worse off for it.”

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Ms Boebert’s comments triggered outcry on social media.

“This is disgusting and vile. No sugar-coating it,” tweeted one Twitter user, Steward Beckham.

“Racism is a feature, not a bug, for the GOP,” said another poster, with the user name Portland Esther.

Ron Cole, from British Columbia, Canada, wrote: “That Boebert appeals to citizens as someone who should represent them in government tells me all I need to know about her constituents. She is but a mirror reflecting the degeneration of America.”

Additional reporting by Associated Press

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