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Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., on Friday apologized to the Muslim community for comments she made about Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., that many deemed Islamophobic.
“I apologize to anyone in the Muslim community I offended with my comment about Rep. Omar,” Boebert said in a statement shared with Fox News Digital. “I have reached out to her office to speak with her directly. There are plenty of policy differences to focus on without this unnecessary distraction.”
Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., talks with Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., during a House Judiciary Committee hearing at the U.S. Capitol on Oct. 21, 2021 in Washington, D.C. (Photo by Michael Reynolds-Pool/Getty Images)
Boebert sparked criticism over Thanksgiving after she was filmed telling supporters in Colorado that she recently had a run-in with Omar in a Capitol building elevator. She said as she was getting in the elevator with a staffer when she saw a Capitol police officer running toward them “with fret all over his face” in an effort to stop the elevator door from closing.
“I look to my left and there she is: Ilhan Omar. And I said, ‘Well, she doesn’t have a backpack. We should be fine,’” Boebert said, sparking cheers. “I looked over and I said, ‘Oh look, the jihad squad decided to show up for work today.’
“Don’t worry, it’s just her staffers on Twitter that talk for her. She’s not tough in person,” she added.
Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., speaks with a reporter as she leaves the U.S. Capitol Building on Nov. 16, 2021 in Washington, D.C. (Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)
Some of Boebert’s critics called for her to be removed from her committee assignments. Omar, meanwhile, said the encounter didn’t even happen.
“Anti-Muslim bigotry isn’t funny & shouldn’t be normalized,” the congresswoman added. “Congress can’t be a place where hateful and dangerous Muslims tropes get no condemnation.”
Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., also weighed in, tweeting: “These pathetic racist lies will not only endanger the life of @IlhanMN, but will increase hate crimes towards Muslims. The continued silence & inaction towards this hate-filled colleague and others is enabling violence. It must stop.”
“Shameful, deeply offensive & dangerous,” tweeted Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass. “Yet another blatant display of Islamophobia targeting @IlhanMN. These comments are personally hurtful, legitimately endanger her & the broader Muslim community. Rhetoric like this must be denounced & anyone spewing it held to account.”
In this April 20, 2021, file photo Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., speaks in Brooklyn Center, Minn., during a news conference at the site of the fatal shooting of Daunte Wright by a police officer during a traffic stop. (AP Photo/Morry Gash, File) (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
“Capitol Hill is a toxic work environment for Muslim members and staff when bigots routinely spew racist, Islamophobic vitriol unchecked and with no consequence,” tweeted Rep. Cori Bush, D-Mo. “Congresswoman @IlhanMN, we love you, and we pray for your well-being and protection from this despicable abuse.”
Omar’s office did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s inquiry on whether the congresswoman spoke with Boebert or accepted the apology.