House Votes To Censure Tlaib Over Anti-Israeli Comments

( – Last Tuesday night, the Republican-majority House of Representatives officially censured Democratic Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan for comments she made against Israel amid the Jewish state’s active conflict with Hamas.

In a vote of 234 to 188, with 22 House Democrats joining 212 Republicans, Tlaib was censured last week for anti-Israel remarks she made over the last month. Four Republicans opposed the measure, and another four voted in favor.

Tlaib responded to the vote by accusing her fellow lawmakers of “distorting” her remarks about the Israel/Hamas conflict and that the resolution was “filled with obvious lies.” She says she’s “repeatedly denounced” the attacks by Hamas against Israel alongside Israel’s military response and “mourned” living lost on both sides of the conflict.

One of the reasons for the censure were remarks Tlaib made in defense of the pro-Palestinian slogan “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.” Critics of the slogan, which is commonly chanted at pro-Palestinian protests internationally, believe that it calls for the genocide of Israelis. The river referred to is the Jordan River, and the sea is the Mediterranean Sea. The lands in between both bodies of water encompass all of the existing state of Israel, so those who oppose the slogan believe it means to eradicate the Jewish state.

The censure measure against Tlaib was introduced by Republican Rep. Rich McCormick of Georgia, who spoke on the house floor and said that her remarks deserved censure because he believes Tlaib is calling for the elimination of Israel for sharing a video that includes the phrase. He asked if such an act isn’t “worthy of censure,” then “what is?”

Tlaib maintains that the phrase isn’t a call to destroy Israel but “an aspirational call for freedom, human rights, and peaceful coexistence” rather than “death, destruction, or hate.” She claims her “work and advocacy” are “centered on justice and dignity” for people of all faiths and ethnicities. When addressing the House floor, Tlaib claimed that a “dangerous precedent” is being set by labeling anyone who criticizes the Israeli government as “antisemitic.”

The ongoing Middle Eastern conflict is currently dividing members of both major parties in the US as the country hobbles toward another presidential election, which will surely be affected by how the situation turns out.

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