House Republicans introduce resolution to censure the 'squad'

A trio of House Republicans on Monday introduced a resolution to censure and condemn Democratic Reps. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarProgressives camp outside Capitol to protest evictions Overnight Defense: US launches another airstrike in Somalia | Amendment to expand Pentagon recusal period added to NDAA | No. 2 State Dept. official to lead nuclear talks with Russia US launches second Somalia strike in week MORE (Minn.), Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezOcasio-Cortez: 'More than enough' votes to prevent infrastructure from passing without reconciliation bill Manchin: 'I can't really guarantee anybody' reconciliation package will pass Sunday shows - Delta variant, infrastructure dominate MORE (N.Y.), Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - A huge win for Biden, centrist senators House passes spending bill to boost Capitol Police and Hill staffer pay Omar reflects on personal experiences with hate in making case for new envoy MORE (Mich.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyProgressives camp outside Capitol to protest evictions Pelosi disputes Biden's power to forgive student loans On The Money: Schumer, Warren call on Biden to extend student loan pause | IMF estimates 6 percent global growth this year MORE (Mass.) for what they call “defending terrorist organizations and inciting anti-Semitic attacks across the United States.”

The resolution, introduced by Reps. Michael WaltzMichael WaltzHouse lawmakers push for diplomatic boycott of Beijing Olympics Overnight Defense: US to evacuate Afghan allies at end of July | Biden meets with final top US commander in Afghanistan | Weapons buyer nominee withdraws amid IG probe US to evacuate Afghans who assisted US military MORE (R-Fla.), Jim Banks (R-Ind.) and Claudia Tenney (R-N.Y.), cites a number of incidents involving the four lawmakers, sometimes referred to as “the squad,” including the most recent controversy surrounding Omar and her comments equating war crimes committed by the U.S. and Israel to those by the Taliban and Hamas terrorist groups.

The resolution also cites the four lawmakers referring to Israel as an “apartheid state” and points to Tlaib accusing the Israeli government of “ethnic cleansing” against Palestinians.

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“We cannot turn a blind eye to Members of Congress openly defending terrorist attacks by Hamas against our close ally Israel nor their dangerous rhetoric which has contributed to anti-Semitic attacks across the country,” Waltz said in a press release.

Banks sounded a similar note, saying in the release that the lawmakers “have repeatedly denigrated America and our closest ally.”

The most recent controversy involving the squad members began when Omar was questioning Secretary of State Antony BlinkenAntony BlinkenTaliban push closer to front lines of two major Afghanistan cities US blames Iran for attack on oil tanker off Oman Biden ramps up pressure on Iran as it grapples with protests MORE during a House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing last week about the International Criminal Court's (ICC) investigations of alleged crimes by the Taliban and the U.S. in Afghanistan, in addition to the accusations against Hamas and Israel in the Gaza conflict.

Omar, in a tweet with a clip of her questioning Blinken, wrote, "We must have the same level of accountability and justice for all victims of crimes against humanity. We have seen unthinkable atrocities committed by the U.S., Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban. I asked @SecBlinken where people are supposed to go for justice."

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Omar, a Somali refugee and one of the first two Muslim women elected to Congress, has since made efforts to clarify her remarks, saying she was not equating the U.S. and Israel with terrorist organizations.

“On Monday, I asked Secretary of State Antony Blinken about … ongoing International Criminal Court investigations. To be clear: the conversation was about accountability for specific incidents regarding those ICC cases, not a moral comparison between Hamas and the Taliban and the U.S. and Israel,” she said in a statement.

In response, Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiManchin on reported boos at Democratic luncheon: 'I heard a lot of nos' Kinzinger supports Jan. 6 panel subpoenas for Republicans, including McCarthy Ocasio-Cortez: Democrats can't blame GOP for end of eviction moratorium MORE (D-Calif.) and her entire leadership team last week issued a rare joint statement that sought to quell the growing controversy while adding that “drawing false equivalencies” between democracies and “groups that engage in terrorism,” citing Hamas and the Taliban, “foments prejudice and undermines progress toward a future of peace and security for all.”

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On Sunday, Pelosi said House leadership “did not rebuke” Omar, and called her a “valued member” of the caucus, during an appearance on CNN's "State of the Union."

The censure resolution also follows a successful effort by House Democrats in February, when the chamber voted, largely along party lines, to strip Rep. Marjorie Taylor GreeneMarjorie Taylor GreeneGOP efforts to downplay danger of Capitol riot increase The Memo: What now for anti-Trump Republicans? Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene says she's meeting with Trump 'soon' in Florida MORE (R-Ga.) of her committee assignments for endorsing conspiracy theories, racist dogma and violence against Democratic politicians.

The Hill has reached out to Omar, Ocasio-Cortez, Tlaib and Pressley for comment.