President Donald Trump on Monday waded into his party’s attacks against Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), whose comments about the Holocaust have been taken out of context by House GOP leaders in yet another example of bad-faith attacks against Muslim lawmakers.
Trump claimed in a tweet that Tlaib made a “horrible and highly insensitive statement on the Holocaust,” and he accused her of “tremendous hatred of Israel and the Jewish people.”
In an interview with Yahoo News published Saturday, Tlaib ― one of the first Muslim women elected to Congress and the subject of Islamophobic attacks ― explained her support for a one-state solution in the Israel-Palestine conflict. She said her Palestinian ancestors helped “create a safe haven for Jews” following the Holocaust.
There’s, you know, there’s a kind of a calming feeling, I always tell folks, when I think of the Holocaust and the tragedy of the Holocaust, and the fact that it was my ancestors — Palestinians — who lost their land and some lost their lives, their livelihood, their human dignity, their existence, in many ways, had been wiped out … in the name of trying to create a safe haven for Jews, post-the Holocaust, post-the tragedy and the horrific persecution of Jews across the world at that time.
... I love the fact that it was my ancestors that provided that [safe haven] in many ways. But they did it in a way that took their human dignity away and it was forced on them, and so when I think about one-state, I think about the fact that why can’t we do it in a better way? ... Why can’t we all be free and safe together?
Several GOP House leaders seized on Tlaib using the phrase “a kind of a calming feeling,” and falsely said it describes how she feels about the Holocaust itself.
Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) claimed Tlaib said that “thinking of the Holocaust provides her a ‘calming feeling.’”
House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) also criticized Tlaib by calling the comments “twisted and disgusting.”
Fox News initially published a story with the headline “Rashida Tlaib slammed by House GOP over statement that Holocaust gives her ‘kind of calming feeling.’” It later edited the headline.
Tlaib on Sunday criticized Republicans for “policing my words” and “twisting and turning them to ignite vile attacks on me.”