President Joe Biden praised Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) on Tuesday, despite her repeated criticism of the president failing to criticize Israel.
“I tell you what, Rashida — and I want to say to you that I admire your intellect, I admire your passion, and I admire your concern for so many other people,” Biden said about Tlaib during a speech at a Ford motor company manufacturing facility.
The congresswoman is the daughter of Palestinian immigrants and still has family members who live on the West Bank.
“From my heart, I pray that your grandmom and family are well,” Biden said to Tlaib. “I promise you, I’m going to do everything to see that they are on the West Bank.”
Tlaib greeted Biden at the airport and spoke with him for several minutes on the tarmac. The New York Times reported that Tlaib confronted Biden for enabling Israel’s attacks on Palestinians.
Tlaib has publicly criticized Biden for failing to condemn Israel’s attacks against Hamas.
On MSNBC Monday, Tlaib said:
What’s missing in the statements coming from President Biden. You don’t hear the words ‘Palestinians deserve human rights,’ that Palestinians deserve to exist, that Palestinians deserve to live freely, that children need to be safe and secure. You only hear it when they talk about Israeli citizens that are of a certain faith.
But Biden only praised Tlaib from the stage, during his event in Detroit.
“You’re a fighter,” he said. “And, God, thank you for being a fighter.”
On Friday, Tlaib falsely compared Israel to South African apartheid, calling for the United States to boycott Israel for defending itself from Hamas terrorism.
“What we are telling Palestinians fighting apartheid saying is the same thing being told to my black neighbors and Americans throughout who are fighting against police brutality here,” she said.