(WASHINGTON) — The House could vote as soon as Wednesday on a resolution to keep Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., from the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
The House Rules Committee voted along party lines on Tuesday night, 9-4, to advance a resolution to effectively block Omar from the panel — by removing her once she is seated.
The resolution, which was introduced by Republican Rep. Max Miller of Ohio, cites some of Omar’s previous controversial statements to argue she doesn’t have an “objective mindset.”
Omar has since apologized for antisemitic remarks, including one suggesting that pro-Israel lobbyists were buying political support.
Miller insisted it wasn’t about a “tit-for-tat,” given that Democrats and some Republicans had removed two GOP lawmakers from committees in the last Congress.
Omar “attempted to undermine” the U.S. relationship with Israel and “disqualified” herself from the panel, Miller argued.
In response, Omar wrote on Twitter that “there is nothing objectively true in this resolution. It’s all perceived and filled with pretext.”
To the claim of a lack of objectivity, she wrote, “We vote our districts. … This censorship really underscores their true intentions.”
Democrats still need to formally submit a resolution outlining their members on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, which they have not yet done.
Speaker Kevin McCarthy, who has repeatedly vowed to remove Omar and two other Democrats once his party retook power, said on Tuesday night when leaving the House floor that he believes he has the votes to boot Omar from her committee assignment, despite some objections in his conference.
Earlier Tuesday, a GOP holdout on removing Omar, Indiana Rep. Victoria Spartz, announced that she was now a yes on the issue.
“I appreciate Speaker McCarthy’s willingness to address legitimate concerns and add due process language to our resolution. Deliberation and debate are vital for our institution, not top-down approaches,” Spartz said in a statement.
She had said last week that she would oppose removing Omar: “Speaker McCarthy is taking unprecedented actions this Congress to deny some committee assignments to the Minority without proper due process.”
Reps. Ken Buck, R-Colo., and Nancy Mace, R-S.C., have indicated that they will not support blocking Omar from the committee. Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz is undecided and Rep. Greg Steube, also R-Fla., is recovering from an accident — so the GOP can only lose four votes, if Democrats unite to keep Omar on the committee.
Notably, the resolution states that “any member reserves the right to bring a case before the Committee on Ethics as grounds for an appeal to the Speaker of the House for reconsideration of any committee removal decision.”
Some Democrats were quick to call out the process.
“The notion this resolution has any due process is simply bull—-,” the House Rules Committee’s ranking member, Massachusetts Democrat Jim McGovern, said during an emergency meeting Tuesday night to consider the resolution.
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