BY ZACHARY STIEBER
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) offered to give Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) money for a trip to Somalia, her country of birth, saying she should go there to “learn” and “appreciate America more.”
Paul’s comments come after President Donald Trump has repeatedly attacked Omar and her close allies, known as the “Squad,” for their remarks about a range of issues, including dismissal of some American traditions. A campaign video released this week included an attack on Omar for saying: “Ignorance is very pervasive in this country.”
Omar came to America as a refugee when she was a child and is now a naturalized American citizen.
“I’ve met people who have come here from behind the Iron Curtain. They got away from communism, they’re some of the best Americans we have, because they really appreciate how great our country is, and then I hear Representative Omar say America is a terrible place,” Paul, a known Trump ally, told Breitbart.
“Well, she came here and we fed her, we clothed her, she got welfare, she got [schooling], she got healthcare, and then, lo and behold, she has the honor of actually winning a seat in Congress, and she says we’re a terrible country? I think that’s about as ungrateful as you can get.”
.@RandPaul on @IlhanMN: “I’m willing to contribute to buy her a ticket to visit #Somalia… she can look and maybe learn a little bit about the disaster that is Somalia.” “After she’s visited Somalia she might come back and appreciate America more.” https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2019/07/26/rand-paul-maybe-ilhan-omar-would-appreciate-america-more-if-she-visited-somalia/ …44.6K6:30 AM – Jul 27, 2019
Paul said that he would chip in for Omar’s plane ticket to Somalia.
“I think she can look and maybe learn a little bit about the disaster that is Somalia—that has no capitalism, has no God-given rights guaranteed in a constitution, and has about seven different tribes that have been fighting each other for the last 40 years. And then maybe after she’s visited Somalia for a while, she might come back and appreciate America more.”
Paul previously said that he was “sort of dumbfounded how unappreciative she is of our country.”
“She has this bitterness and anger toward the country,” Paul said. “So I think she does deserve a rebuke over trying to say we have a rotten country.”
Paul was responding to Omar’s comments about America, which included saying that the country is perceived as “great” but that “we don’t live these values here.” He was also defending Trump, who started a firestorm on July 14 when he hit out at Omar and her allies.
“So interesting to see ‘Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run,” he wrote on Twitter at the time.
“Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. Then come back and show us how it is done. These places need your help badly, you can’t leave fast enough.”
Some critics said Trump’s remarks were racist but the president later saidthat he meant that people who hate America should leave.
“Well, they’re very unhappy. I’m watching them; all they do is complain. So all I’m saying is, if they want to leave, they can leave … They can leave,” Trump said of Omar and Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.).
About Omar, he added: “Somebody that comes from Somalia, which is a failed government, a failed state, who left Somalia, who ultimately came here and now is a congresswoman, who’s never happy. [Omar] says horrible things about Israel, hates Israel, hates Jews, hates Jews, it’s very simple.”
The “Squad” has roundly criticized Trump for his comments, calling him racist and misogynistic.