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Donors lavishly fund opponent of Ilhan Omar, her career may end soon

India, Ilhan Omar, Pakistan, United States, Muslim, Jihad, Antone Melton-Meaux

International

Donors lavishly fund opponent of Ilhan Omar, her career may end soon

Ilhan Omar has earned huge controversies, especially because of heavy inclination towards radical Islam, jihad and even enemies of the United States. Recently she visited Pakistan and spread venom against Hindus and India and expressed her solidarity towards radical Islamic jihadists in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir as well as Pakistani spy agency’s continuous bids in spreading terrorism inside India.

But now, during the primary which is scheduled to be held on August 9, 2022, Ilhan Omar faces uncertainty of holding her position and continue her nefarious anti-Semite, anti-Hindu, anti-India and even anti-US agendas by collaborating with other members of the infamous ‘Squad’. This has become clear as Omar’s primary opponent Antone Melton-Meaux, who is rather an unknown Minneapolis lawyer has succeeded in raising millions of dollars from big-dollar donors in the recent months fueled by intense animosity toward a radical Muslim Ilhan Omar.

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Commenting on Antone Melton-Meaux, a donor named Stan Weinstein, a retired real estate executive from Miami Beach, who donated US$2,800 to Melton-Meaux campaign fund said: “I found out about him because I hate his opponent. She does not represent the United States, she doesn’t represent our values, and she doesn’t represent our history”.

Michael, a donor from Scarsdale, New York, who also gave US$2,800 to Melton-Meaux said: “If Mickey Mouse ran against her, I’d donate to him”.

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Melton-Meaux took in US$1.5 million in May, with an average donation of more than US$650, according to ActBlue data. The bulk of that money came from donors who gave more than US$2,000, and a substantial chunk of it was bundled by pro-Israel groups. His campaign confirmed those numbers to BuzzFeed News, including any fundraising in June.

According to BuzzFeed News, Ilhan Omar is still the heavy favorite in the four-way August primary in her district in the heart of deep-blue Minneapolis, which has been the epicenter of nationwide protests over racism and police brutality this summer. But the campaign of Melton-Meaux, a Black lawyer and mediator who has never before run for office, has picked up steam in recent months by fundraising on the back of dislike of Omar.

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One out-of-state donor gave US$2,800 to Melton-Meaux after asking if there was any way he could “vote against that lady”, said his son, who asked that their name not be used. The donor’s son found Melton-Meaux after searching for Ilhan Omar’s primary opponents.

In Minneapolis itself, Melton-Meaux has also picked up endorsements that could show signs of weakness for the incumbent. He is backed by a number of local politicians and civil rights activists, as well as Jewish leaders who have condemned Omar’s history of anti-Semitic comments, although she later apologized for but again continued the same notoriety.

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Some of the pro-Ilhan Omar analysts said, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, another member of the “Squad” of Democratic women of color who were elected to the House in 2018, faced a well-funded primary challenge that accused her of abandoning her district. But finally, she crushed her opponent by a margin of some 50 percentage points.

Responding to this claim, anti-Omar analysts said, Minnesota’s fifth district is substantially different from the districts represented by the rest of the Squad: It’s 63 percent white, with a substantial population of high-income voters, and a Jewish community that has been unhappy with Ilhan Omar’s brief tenure.

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The district is 18 percent Black, including the large Somali immigrant community of which Omar is a part and this Somali immigrant community would cast their votes in favor of Omar without considering her notorious anti-Semitic tendencies. But, some of Omar’s opponents see an opportunity to splinter off the district’s other Black voters, as well as wealthier, white voters in different parts of the segregated city. A top Minnesota Democrat said “I think she’ll win, but I think it’ll be closer than people think.

“It isn’t surprising that billionaire corporate donors are targeting Ilhan Omar, just like they targeted Ocasio-Cortez and Jamaal Bowman”, Isaiah Kirshner-Breen, Omar’s deputy communications director, told BuzzFeed News in a statement.

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“But what is surprising is the degree to which this money is fueled by Islamophobia, xenophobia and misogyny. It is clear that Republican donors will do anything in their power to silence and discredit a black Muslim immigrant service in Congress—even supporting a self-described Democrat. This money isn’t just about politics; it’s about hate”.

Ilhan Omar’s campaign has raised US$3.3 million, mostly, like Melton-Meaux, from out of state donors, and said its average donation was US$18.

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Melton-Meaux describes himself as a progressive, and he has run to the center of Omar on policy issues. But at the core of his campaign is a portrait of Omar as a “divider” who has left behind her district, and her attempts to legislate, in a quest for international fame.

Melton-Meaux said he voted for Omar in 2018 before becoming disillusioned by her brief tenure in the House, especially the number of votes she missed in 2019, which was significantly higher than the state’s other representatives.

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“We don’t want someone who’s looking out for themselves — who’s interested in launching a memoir, who’s focused on her celebrity. People need someone who is going to show up”, Melton-Meaux told BuzzFeed News.

In glossy mailers that have papered the district in recent weeks, Melton-Meaux’s campaign criticized Omar for having “been to Africa three times” while being absent from other parts of her district. Other mailers and advertisements have highlighted Melton-Meaux’s “American story” and his family’s long history in America, including as the descendants of enslaved people.

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Melton-Meaux said the focus on his family history is not meant as a contrast to Omar, but a way for voters to understand him, especially his history as a Black man in the wake of the killing of George Floyd.

Hopefully voters, especially those who are committed in confronting radical Islam, jihad, anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial will refrain from casting their votes in favor of Ilhan Omar. They need to remember – Ilhan Omar is an agent of the Islamists as well as enemies of the -United States.

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An internationally acclaimed multi-award-winning anti-militancy journalist, research-scholar, counter-terrorism specialist, and editor of Blitz. Follow him on Twitter Salah_Shoaib

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