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Ilhan Omar spurs uproar over Mike Pence ‘Jesus take the wheel’ tweet

December 17, 2018

Rep. Ilhan Omar has ignited a social media pile-up over a tweet decried for mocking Vice President Mike Pence’s Christian faith.

The Minnesota Democrat, the first Muslim woman along with Michigan’s Rashida Tlaib to be elected to Congress, tweeted a photo of Mr. Pence closing his eyes and added the message, “Jesus take the wheel!”

Ms. Omar was one of many who commented on Mr. Pence’s calm demeanor during the heated Dec. 11 Oval Office meeting between President Trump and Democratic House leaders, but her tweet struck many on the right as tone-deaf at best and offensive at worst.

Critics said Ms. Omar, who has denounced Islamophobia, religious discrimination and the “culture of intolerance,” has been largely given a pass for her Dec. 10 tweet, which they attributed to a media double standard.

Conservative radio talk-show host Curt Schilling said anyone making fun of Ms. Omar’s faith would have been “publicly shamed into exile,” while the Federalist’s David Harsanyi asked, “I wonder what would happen if Pence made fun of Omar’s belief in Muhammad?”

Incoming Dem Rep Ilhan Omar Mocks VP Pence’s Christian Faith https://t.co/qg9x3I5ZTF Legal Insurrection (@LegInsurrection) December 16, 2018

Jesus take the wheel! #BorderWall pic.twitter.com/aEPle6HFF1 Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) December 11, 2018

Imagine the amount of heat a Christian politician would take if he/she mocked a Muslim’s faith.... Gross take, @IlhanMN https://t.co/eGHnulObtQ Students For Trump (@TrumpStudents) December 17, 2018

Ms. Omar has not removed or commented publicly on the 6-day-old tweet.

This wasn’t the first controversial religious tweet from Ms. Omar, who admitted after the November election to supporting the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, an issue she had skirted during the campaign.

In 2012, she tweeted that “Israel has hypnotized the world,” blasting the Jewish state’s “evil doings,” and the “apartheid Israeli regime.”

Spurred by Ms. Omar, who wears a hijab, Democrats plan to create an exception to the 181-year-old rule banning headwear on the House floor by allowing religious coverings.

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