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Ilhan Omar: 'I truly believe' Fox News host Tucker Carlson is 'a racist fool'

The Hill logo The Hill 7/10/2019 Rachel Frazin
Ilhan Omar wearing a red hat and looking at the camera: Congresswoman Ilhan Omar came to the U.S. as a refugee. © Greg Nash Congresswoman Ilhan Omar came to the U.S. as a refugee.

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) doubled down Wednesday in calling Fox News host Tucker Carlson a "racist fool" in response to his on-air comments about her Tuesday.

"I truly believe he is a racist fool," Omar told reporters as she left a Democratic caucus meeting Wednesday morning.

Omar continued, saying Carlson is "weeping about the fact that we have an African-born member of Congress, the type of people that the likes of him think come from s---hole countries," referring to President Trump's reported 2018 comments referring to some African nations.

"The fact that he doesn't get the opportunity to ban me from this country and now he has to call me a congresswoman I'm sure pisses him off," she added.

Omar, who came to the U.S. as a refugee from Somalia, initially called Carlson a "racist fool" in a Tuesday-night tweet following the Fox News host's comments about her on his show.

Carlson said Tuesday that the congresswoman is "living proof" that U.S. immigration laws are "dangerous."

Pointing to Omar's success story going from refugee to "one of the most powerful women in America" at age 36, Carlson accused the lawmaker of not being "grateful" to the country.

Tucker Carlson, host of Fox News Channel's "Tucker Carlson Tonight." © Richard Drew Tucker Carlson, host of Fox News Channel's "Tucker Carlson Tonight." "After everything America has done for Omar and for her family, she hates this country more than ever," he said.

"Omar isn't disappointed in America, she is enraged by it. Virtually every public statement she makes accuses Americans of bigotry and racism," he continued. "That should worry you and not just because Omar is now a sitting Member of Congress. Ilhan Omar is living proof that the way we practice immigration has become dangerous to this country."

"Maybe that's our fault for asking too little of our immigrants. We aren't self-confident enough to make them assimilate so they never feel fully American. Or maybe the problem is deeper than that," he added. "Maybe we're importing people from places whose values are simply in antithetical to ours. Who knows what the problem is, but there is a problem."

Omar, one of the first two Muslim women elected to Congress, has been harshly critical of Trump and Republicans during her time in office. She has also sparked tension within her own party with controversial comments about Israel that led to accusations of anti-Semitism.

Carlson ended his segment telling viewers to be "grateful for Ilhan Omar, annoying as she is."

"She's a living fire alarm, a warning to the rest of us we better change our immigration system immediately," he said. "Or else."

Omar responded in a Tuesday night tweet saying that "lies" will not "stamp out my love for this country."

"Not gonna lie, it's kinda fun watching a racist fool like this weeping about my presence in Congress," she wrote. "No lies will stamp out my love for this country or my resolve to make our union more perfect."

"They will just have to get used to calling me Congresswoman!" she added.

Carlson will address the topic on Wednesday night's show, according to the network.

Carlson has previously called Omar a "symbol of America's failed immigration system," and has faced widespread criticism from the left for his rhetoric on immigrants.

-Cristina Marcos contributed to this report.

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