MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — President Donald Trump’s war of words with “the Squad” has turned into a campaign rallying cry.
A crowd chanted “Send her back” at a Trump campaign rally in North Carolina Wednesday night. The “her” in question was Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar.
The congresswoman responded with a pair of tweets, first writing, “I am where I belong, at the people’s house, and you’re just gonna have to deal!” She then tweeted a Maya Angelou poem that read: “You may shoot me with your words / You may cut me with your eyes / You may kill me with your hatefulness / But still, like air, I’ll rise.”
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While leaving Washington for a “Medicare for All” town hall in Minneapolis, Omar spoke to reporters, saying that she believes the president thinks people like her “should go back.”
“The message that he’s sending is not for me,” she said, “it’s to every single person who shares an identity with me and he’s telling them that this is not their country.”
Omar was born in Somalia and lived a refugee camp in Kenya before her family moved to Minnesota when she was as teenager. Over the weekend, Trump tweeted that Omar and the three other Squad members, all of whom are congresswomen of color, should “go back” to the countries they came from. Omar was the only one born outside the U.S.
On Tuesday, the Democratic-led House voted to condemn Trump’s language in the tweet as racist. Only four Republicans voted for the condemnation. None were from Minnesota.
While speaking to reporters Thursday morning, Omar said that immigrants like her are as American as everyone else in the country.
“We are where we belong,” she said. “I told people on my election night, in the great state of Minnesota, we don’t just welcome refugees, we send them to represent us in Washington.”
She continued: “As much as [Trump is] spewing his fascist ideology on stage, telling you as citizens to go back because they don’t agree with his detrimental policies for our country, we tell people that here in the U.S the sense is patriotic, here in the U.S. disagreement is welcome, debate is welcome, and especially in the people’s house, all of our voices are uplifted.”