Minnesota state rep.-elect Ilhan Omar made news last week when she announced on Facebook that she had been subjected to bigoted threats by a D.C. taxi driver. Omar was in Washington to attend a conference for Democratic state legislators seeking to steer the country further to the left as well as two briefing sessions at the White House. Valerie Jarrett was on hand at the briefing sessions to lend her expert guidance. As Omar put it in a December 7 post on her Facebook page: “I spent yesterday afternoon at the White House, learning about policy ideas states could implement in the areas I am passionate about.”
Omar won’t be doing much implementing back home. At least for the next two years Omar will learn the joys of life in the minority in the Minnesota House. Except for the public relations opportunities, they are few and far between.
On the public relations front, Omar appeared on Rachel Maddow’s MSNBC program this past Thursday to tell her harrowing story of the taxi ride from hell (video below, about ten minutes, but Maddow is tough to take at any length).
Star Tribune reporter Patrick Coolican has covered the story that we have explored on Power Line regarding Omar’s possible marriage to her brother for dishonest purposes. Who is Ahmed Nur Said Elmi, the guy named on Omar’s marriage certificate? Is he in fact her brother? Omar has declined to sit for an interview on the subject with Coolican or anyone else at the Star Tribune. When she recently talked about the story with a reporter from the alternative weekly City Pages, truth was the first casualty.
On Monday Omar released a statement on the D.C. taxi incident. In the statement she reveals that she was accompanied by her sister at the time of the incident and the alleged perpetrator is an African immigrant. She announces that she has filed complaints with the Department of For-Hire Vehicles and the Human Rights Commission in D.C. She adds: “I did not, however, file a police report, because I believe criminalizing hate is not a solution and will only strengthen individual malice. Bigotry is a product of ignorance; by educating people, we will move toward respect and understanding.”
Star Tribune reporter Ricardo Lopez covers Omar’s statement. Lopez notes:
The Star Tribune since Wednesday has unsuccessfully sought an interview with Omar, who later recounted the event on MSNBC Thursday night in an appearance on “The Rachel Maddow Show.”
Omar has not provided information about the cab she took, nor a fuller description of the driver who in her Monday statement she described as an “African immigrant.”
I wrote about Omar for City Journal this past September in the column “The curious case of Ilhan Omar.” I refrain from further comment at this point other than to observe that the case get curiouser and curiouser.