Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) said in an interview that she often talks to her children about the threats she receives from her constituents while a man is being arrested for vandalizing her office.
“I have to talk to my kids regularly, ‘What happens if I get killed?'” Omar said in an interview with the Star Tribune published Saturday. “I have to talk to them regularly about how to walk down the street, things to look for.”
Omar, a Muslim Somali-American, also told the Tribune that she does not trust House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) to address the issue of her needing additional security and protection because of the threats she received, including she noted how previous House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) addressed her safety concerns.
“I’m not sure if things were to rise to a dangerous level again I can trust the current speaker to take my safety and the safety of some of my other former vulnerable colleagues away. [seriously]”, Omar told the newspaper.
In a statement to the Tribune, a spokesman for McCarthy’s office said the speaker “made clear his expectation that politics should be separated from security and authorized the House Sergeant at Arms to work with the U.S. Capitol Police to to protect all members of Congress as they see fit.”
Omar’s comments come after Minnesota authorities arrested and charged a man last week with setting fire to two mosques in the Minneapolis area and vandalizing Omar’s office.
Authorities said Jackie Rahm Little, also known as Joel Arthur Tueting, was charged with setting fire to the bathroom of the Masjid Omar Islamic Center on April 23 and setting fire to the Masjid Al Rahma Mosque the following day. Little allegedly entered Omar’s local office and vandalized it, authorities said, spray-painting the number “500” on the door of the lawmaker’s office.
Little was charged in a federal criminal charge of arson.
“Mr. Little is not only responsible for multiple arson attacks against mosques in my district and the vandalism of a Somali officer’s police vehicle, but has also vandalized my own office at least once,” Omar said in a statement confirming that her office was destroyed..
“We are currently witnessing an epidemic of hatred against the Muslim community and other religious minorities in Minnesota and around the world. This terror campaign is designed to keep us scared and divided,” she added.
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