Rep. Omar Says Lauren Boebert Refused to Apologize on Call, Doubled Down on Remarks

Democratic Representative Ilhan Omar of Minnesota said that Republican Representative Lauren Boebert failed to directly apologize for several recent offensive remarks during a phone call on Monday.

In a statement, Omar, a practicing Muslim, said that Boebert did not acknowledge her "hurtful and dangerous comments" or her "history of anti-Muslim hate." She also claimed that the Colorado congresswoman began to double down on her recent rhetoric before she decided to end the "unproductive call."

"Today, I graciously accepted a call from Rep. Lauren Boebert in the hope of receiving a direct apology for falsely claiming she met me in an elevator, suggesting I was a terrorist, and for a history of anti-Muslim hate," Omar wrote. "Instead of apologizing for her Islamophobic comments and fabricated lies, Rep. Boebert refused to publicly acknowledge her hurtful and dangerous comments. She instead doubled down on her rhetoric and I decided to end the unproductive call."

Boebert recently reignited controversy with comments directed towards Omar during the House discussion meeting about censuring Republican Representative Paul Gosar of Arizona. During the discussion, Boebert referred to Omar as a member of the "Jihad Squad." A video taken prior to the discussion also surfaced following that comment, in which Boebert mentioned once being in an elevator with Omar and joked about the congresswoman potentially having a bomb in her backpack.

ilhan omar lauren boebert apology
Representative Ilhan Omar said that Representative Lauren Boebert did not apologize to her for offensive remarks she recently made. Above, Omar campaigns at the intersection of Broadway Avenue and Central Avenue on August 11, 2020, in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

"I believe in engaging with those we disagree with respectfully, but not when that disagreement is rooted in outright bigotry and hate," Omar continued in her statement. "To date, the Republican Party leadership has done nothing to condemn and hold their own members accountable for repeated instances of anti-Muslim hate and harassment. This is not about one hateful statement or one politician; it is about a party that has mainstreamed bigotry and hatred. It is time for Republican Leader [Kevin] McCarthy to actually hold his party accountable."

On Friday, Boebert issued an apology for her comments via Twitter. In the statement, she also mentioned reaching out to Omar's office to set up direct communication.

"I apologize to anyone in the Muslim community I offended with my comment about Rep. Omar," Boebert tweeted. "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."

Following the release of Omar's statement, Boebert released a video on Twitter offering her perspective on the phone call.

"I wanted to let her know directly that I had reflected on my previous remarks, Boebert said. "Now, as a strong Christian woman who values faith deeply, I never want anything I say to offend someone's religion. So I told her that. Even after I put out a public statement to that effect. She said that she still wanted a public apology because what I had done wasn't good enough. She kept asking for a public apology.

"So I told Ilhan Omar that she should make a public apology to the American people for her anti-American, anti-Semitic, anti-police rhetoric. She continued to press, and I continued to press back. And then, Rep. Omar hung up on me. Rejecting an apology and hanging up on someone is part of cancel culture 101 and a pillar of the Democrat Party."