House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer brought down the house at the AIPAC conference over the weekend when he went after freshman House Democrats for criticizing America’s strong ties with Israel.
Hoyer addressed the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual conference on Sunday and took aim at freshman House Reps. Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib, three members of a coalition of Justice Democrats, who’ve argued AIPAC pays politicians to control the federal government.
Omar, who became the first Muslim woman in Congress alongside Tlaib, was forced to apologize in February for posts to Twitter alleging pro-Israel policies in Congress are “all about the Benjamins,” but House leaders failed to muster support for a stronger statement against her anti-Semitic remarks.
There was like a 60 second standing ovation for steny hoyer’s left bashing and fearmongering pic.twitter.com/gf0zG44YDg
— Naomi LaChance (@lachancenaomi) March 24, 2019
Hoyer provided that statement Sunday.
Hoyer told the AIPAC conference he “stands with Israel, proudly and unapologetically.”
“So ladies and gentlemen, when someone accuses American supporters of dual loyalty I say: Accuse me,” he said. “Let’s have debates on policy instead of impugning the loyalty of Israel’s supporters.”
America’s close ties with Israel are designed to ensure “Israel remains a strong and free refuge from the haters of the world. Yes, we stand with Israel,” said Hoyer, the number two House Democrat behind Speaker Nancy Pelosi. “I thank you for the honor of standing with you for Israel.”
He also reportedly took a shot at Justice Democrats causing problems in the party, The New York Times’ Sheryl Gay Stolberg posted to Twitter.
— Sheryl Gay Stolberg (@SherylNYT) March 24, 2019
“[email protected] gets a standing ovation while jabbing @IlhanMN @AOC @RashidaTlaib before an @AIPAC audience: ‘By the way there are 62 freshmen Democrats. You hear me? 62, not 3,’” she wrote.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer blasts anti-Semitic Democrat Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, and Rashida Tlaib at AIPAC: "By the way, there are 62 freshmen Democrats. You hear me? 62, not 3"
"When someone accuses American supporters of dual loyalty I say accuse me" pic.twitter.com/TXj9rsVjPo
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) March 26, 2019
By Monday afternoon, Hoyer had changed his tune, according to The Hill.
He’s now backpedaling to save face with the far-left by putting out a prepared statement to clarify comments he claims were “misinterpreted” by the media.
.@LeaderHoyer says his comments were “misinterpreted,”
and that he was simply “lamenting that the media does not appear to be paying enough attention to other excellent new Members.” Full statement below. pic.twitter.com/Z02aCmahZc
— Sheryl Gay Stolberg (@SherylNYT) March 25, 2019
“Last night, I made a comment during my remarks that was, unfortunately, misinterpreted, and I want to make sure there is no ambiguity about what I said. Our Caucus has a dynamic freshman class of sixty-three new Members, all of whom are doing a great job and bringing unique perspectives and backgrounds to their work in the House,” Hoyer wrote.
“In pointing out that much of the press attention has been on a few new Members in particular, I was lamenting that the media does not appear to be paying enough attention to other excellent new Members who are also bringing important new energy and diverse perspectives to our Caucus and to the Congress,” he continued.
“I am proud and excited to serve with all our new Democratic Members, who reflect the diversity of our country better than any freshman class in our history.”