Pelosi backs Ilhan Omar in Minnesota primary vs. challenger with pro-Israel backing

Omar was widely criticized last year by Pelosi and others for a comment widely considered anti-Semitic

Published: July 16, 2020 1:44pm

Updated: July 16, 2020 4:53pm

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has endorsed Minnesota Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar in her primary bid for a second term. 

"Ilhan is a valued and important Member of our Caucus. In her first term, Ilhan has already established herself as a leader on a host of issues — from child nutrition to housing to U.S.-Africa relations," Pelosi, a California Democrat, said in a statement, according to the Jewish Telegraph Agency.

Omar is part of the freshmen class of House Democrats known as "the Squad," which includes New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and has been critical of House leadership. 

Omar also last year made a comment considered by many, including Pelosi, as anti-Semitic.

"It's all about the Benjamins baby,” she tweeted in response to a tweet about pro-Israel groups' support for Republicans. 

Omar is facing a 2020 primary challenge from Minnesota attorney Antone Melton-Meaux, whose bid reportedly has a financial commitment from Pro-Israel America and NORPAC — pro-Israel political action committees.

Melton-Meaux reportedly leads Omar in overall fundraising, with the primary on Aug. 11.

He said this week that he raised $3.2 million from April through the end of June, and has $2 million cash left in the bank. Omar took in $471,624 over the same period, and her campaign reportedly has more than $1.1 million left on hand, according to the Associated Press.


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