Democrat Ilhan Omar Blames Sanctions, Not Socialism, for Venezuela’s Woes

Ilhan Omar Nancy Pelosi (J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press)
J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press
JOEL B. POLLAK

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) appointed Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) to the House Foreign Relations Committee, and the radical “Justice Democrat” is already drawing mockery for her position on Venezuela.

On Wednesday, the U.S. and many other nations recognized the president of the Venezuelan National Assembly, Juan Guaidó, as the interim president of Venezuela, on the basis of provisions in the Venezuelan constitution that declare any government that destroys democracy or violates human rights in the country to be illegitimate.

Omar tweeted Thursday that the United States had backed a “coup” to bring the “right wing” opposition to power.

The problem: Venezuela’s opposition is socialist, and is invoking the country’s constitution, not seizing power.

In addition, Omar’s contention that the opposition will “incite violence” ignores the fact that the socialist regime of Nicolas Maduro — and of Hugo Chavez before him — has carried out violence against peaceful opposition protests.

Omar’s tweet was widely mocked by fellow Democrats, foreign policy experts, and — crucially — Venezuelans themselves.

Yet Omar doubled down on Friday morning, reiterating that the U.S. was conducting a “coup,” and blaming U.S. sanctions — not Maduro’s disastrous socialist policies — for the country’s persistent economic problems:

Pelosi appointed Omar to the House Foreign Affairs Committee — Omar’s first choice — despite the Minnesota congresswoman’s history of hostility to Israel and her record of antisemitic statements.

Her position on Venezuela coincides with that of Iran, Russia, China, Turkey, the Palestinian Authority, and the Hezbollah terror group.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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