OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
Calls are pouring in for the House to expel Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) after remarks she made in her home state last week, telling a group of Somalis that she is advocating for the country where she was born and lived for a time before coming to the U.S. and getting elected to Congress.
On Sunday, a three-minute video clip featuring Omar went viral, which appears to have been translated by individuals claiming to be officials from Somaliland, a self-declared independent region within Somalia that has asserted its sovereignty for decades, although it lacks international recognition as an independent nation, the Daily Wire reported.
Omar delivered her remarks on Saturday during an event held at the Hyatt Regency Minneapolis, which was organized to celebrate the recent re-election of Said Abdullahi Deni as the President of the Puntland State of Somalia.
Omar’s comments coincide with recent tensions between Ethiopia and Somalia concerning Somaliland. Reportedly, Ethiopia reached an agreement with Somaliland that involves recognizing the enclave as an independent nation separate from Somalia. In return, Ethiopia, a landlocked country, would secure access to a 12-mile coastal stretch in the region through a lease agreement.
Doesn’t sound loyal to the United States
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 30, 2024
The government of Somalia, such as it is, rejected the agreement, however.
“There is no space for mediation unless Ethiopia retracts its illegal (memorandum of understanding) and reaffirms the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Somalia,” the government noted in a statement.
According to a professional translation of Omar’s remarks acquired by The Daily Wire from an international translation service, Omar referred to the agreement between Ethiopia and Somaliland: “A few days ago, we heard the news about some people claiming to be Somalis getting into an agreement with Ethiopia.”
She noted further, per the outlet:
I got calls from a lot of people saying, “Ilhan, you need to talk to the U.S. government; what is the government of the U.S. doing?’”My answer to their question was that the U.S. government would do what we tell them to do about it.
We need to be confident in ourselves. We live in this country; it is the country that we pay taxes to, and it is the country that one of your daughters is in. As long as I am in the U.S. Congress, no one will take away the Somali sea or water. And I will not support the U.S. government in supporting other people to rob us.
Rest assured that it will not happen, Minnesota. The lady that you sent to Congress knows about you, and she feels your interest like you all do.
She then thanked Somali President Hassan Sheikh for “reminding everyone that even if Somalia is in crisis, we are people of talent who know their country and whose country cannot be put in danger.”
“I want to congratulate the Somalis in Minnesota and the Somalis everywhere on how you all are united and how you all supported our President, who needs our support,” she concluded, per the outlet. “Somalia is Somalia, and Somalis are all one; we are all brothers and sisters. No one can divide our land; we are missing land, and we will search for it soon. No one will divide whatever land that we have now.”
The translation of Omar’s comments in the viral video clip closely corresponds with the translation provided to The Daily Wire, conveying her primary message, which is that she emphasizes her advocacy for her homeland from within the U.S. Congress, suggesting it is among her foremost priorities if not her utmost one.
Several Republicans ripped Omar and called on Congress to expel her.
“Expel from Congress, denaturalize and deport!” said Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
“Listen to it all,” added Donald Trump Jr. “It’s not hyperbole when we say our representatives are putting America last.”
House Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) added: “Ilhan Omar’s appalling, Somalia-first comments are a slap in the face to the Minnesotans she was elected to serve and a direct violation of her oath of office. She should resign in disgrace.”
“What if @Ilhan fought for Somalia from Somalia?” asked Rep. Mike Collins (R-GA). “Might be time to discuss expelling another member of Congress.”
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) commented: “She flaunts using her position as congresswoman to protect Somalia’s border while our border is invaded by MILLIONS of illegals who are a danger to America.”
Rep. Diana Harshbarger (R-TN) posted on the X platform: “Terrorist sympathizer Ilhan Omar has shown her true colors. Her treasonous comments and allegiance to Somalia are a violation of her oath of office. Our elected officials have a duty to our nation, and our nation only. We must be vigilant when deciding who is allowed to enter our country.”