Tlaib slams Tapper: Comparing Palestinian rights advocates to white nationalists 'fundamentally a lie'

Tlaib slams Tapper: Comparing Palestinian rights advocates to white nationalists 'fundamentally a lie'
© Aaron Schwartz

Rep. Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibDon't let 'welfare for all' advocates derail administration's food stamp program reforms Omar endorses progressive Georgia Democrat running for House seat Will Bernie have to turn on his bros? MORE (D-Mich.) slammed CNN's Jake TapperJacob (Jake) Paul TapperDemocrats ramp up attacks on opponents in final pitch before New Hampshire George Conway: 'Verdict of history' will be on Romney's side Buttigieg says Democrats must 'galvanize,' not 'polarize' voters MORE for "comparing Palestinian human rights advocates to terrorist white nationalists," calling it "fundamentally a lie." 

The pushback comes after Tapper, who serves as CNN's chief Washington correspondent, drew an analogy between the Palestinian movement and white supremacy in the U.S.

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"You hear conservatives all the time, rightly so, in my opinion, talk about the tone set by people in the Arab world," Tapper said Sunday on "State of the Union."

"Palestinians leaders and the way they talk about Israelis, justifying, in the same way you're doing — no direct link necessarily between what the leader says and the violence to some poor Israeli girl in a pizzeria, but the idea that you're validating this hatred," he continued.

"You can't compare the ideology of Hamas with anything else," he added. "But at the same time, either tone matters or it doesn't."

Al Jazeera's Sana Saeed took exception to the comparison on Twitter, leading to Tlaib echoing the same sentiment.

"It's cool how Jake Tapper compares occupied Palestinians to white nationalists while he's actually giving them a platform on his own show (Richard Spencer most recently)," Sana Saeed tweeted, referring to Tapper's interview of white supremacist Richard Spencer in July. The CNN host was criticized from the left and right for providing Spencer a national platform to discuss President TrumpDonald John TrumpFed saw risks to US economy fading before coronavirus spread quickened Pro-Trump super PAC hits Biden with new Spanish-language ad in Nevada Britain announces immigration policy barring unskilled migrants MORE.

"This is the height of unethical journalism @jaketapper," Tlaib tweeted on Sunday. "You invoke Palestinians & Arabs as a comparison to white nationalist violence in the US? This is blatant anti-Arab bigotry & Islamophobia. @CNN needs to take action."

"Comparing Palestinian human rights advocates to terrorist white nationalists is fundamentally a lie. Palestinians want equality, human dignity & to stop the imprisonment of children. White supremacy is calling for the *domination* of one race w/ the use of violence," Tlaib wrote in another post on Monday.

In response, Tapper said he never used the words Tlaib attributed to him.

"What I said was those who believe Palestinian leaders bear responsibility for the incitement of terrorism cannot then let US leaders off the hook and act as if words don't matter," he tweeted.

--Updated at 1:32 p.m.