Trump renews attacks on Omar, praises 'send her back' crowd

Donald Trump

US President Donald Trump addresses the crowd of a rally as supporters chant "send her back". He paused in his speech and surveyed the scene, taking in the uproar.

FILE - Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, left, looks at a paper held by President Donald Trump about Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., as Trump speaks during a Cabinet meeting in the Cabinet Room of the White House, July 16, 2019. "I was not happy with it". I disagreed with it. "This is not about me. I believe he is fascist".

For Trump, the choice is binary - if you defend the four congresswomen in any way, then you endorse all of their statements and policies. Paul International Airport as she arrived from Washington.

Thursday evening Omar will be participating in a Medicare for All town hall in Minneapolis.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, one of the Democratic congresswomen singled out for criticism by Trump, said they will not "go back" on social progress.

His latest targets are Omar and Reps. The four women are Ms Omar, 37, Rashida Tlaib, 42, Ayanna Pressley, 45, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, 29. Three were born in the United States; Omar was born in Mogadishu, Somalia, and became a U.S. citizen as a teenager.

"A vote for any Democrat in 2020 is a vote for the rise of radical socialism and the destruction of the American Dream - frankly the destruction of our country", Trump said. "There's such hatred. They have such hatred".

Mr Trump tweeted over the weekend that the four progressive representatives, known as "the squad" - Ms Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Rashida Tlaib of MI and Ayanna Pressley of MA - should "go back" where they came from, even though all are USA citizens and three are US-born. On Wednesday, it rejected an effort by one Democrat that was opposed by party leaders to impeach Trump.

He is now understood to be trying to make amends faced with growing unease among Republicans about his feud with the four Democratic women lawmakers of color and the racist tone that he has adopted and has continued to pursue.

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Several, including Kevin McCarthy, leader of the Republicans in the House, have condemned the chants.

Rep. Adam Kinzinger of IL tweeted that it was "ugly, wrong, & would send chills down the spines of our Founding Fathers. This ugliness must end, or we risk our great union".

Lara Trump, the president's daughter-in-law, argued Friday that racism accusations were losing traction in the United States because people were exhausted of hearing them.

Last year, she won her congressional seat, overwhelming a Republican candidate to fill the seat of a Democratic congressman - Keith Ellison, also a Muslim American - who left it to win election as the state's attorney general. Democrats had hoped the spotlight on Thursday would be on House passage of legislation to boost the minimum wage for the first time in a decade.

Aside from drawing Trump's attention and his ire, the outspoken Omar has in six-plus months in Congress often rankled her Democratic colleagues, a number of them Jewish and more broadly, regardless of their religion, longtime supporters of Israel.

After his comments the crowd standing chanting "send her home" in reference to Ms Omar. That goes for every one of us. He said he "would certainly try" to stop the chant should it return at a subsequent rally.

"We don't need to take it that far where we change the narrative of the story", he said he told Pence. At the rally in Greenville, North Carolina, Mr Trump targeted Ms Omar in particular, saying the Minnesota politician had blamed America for terrorist attacks and was anti-Semitic. "I think, in some cases, they hate our country".

Matt Bennett, executive vice president of Third Way, a centrist Democratic think tank, said there was a danger the party could play into Trump's hands unless a moderate such as Biden pushes back at the president's attempts to frame the election as a contest between himself and a unsafe leftist.

"Let me hear you say 'I condemn them, '" the former vice president said of Trump following a campaign event in Los Angeles.

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