Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., on Friday apologized for suggesting Muslim Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., was mistaken for a terrorist in an elevator both were riding in the U.S. Capitol.
“I apologize to anyone in the Muslim community I offended with my comment about Rep. Omar,” Boebert wrote on Twitter. “I have reached out to her office to speak with her directly. There are plenty of policy differences to focus on without this unnecessary distraction.”
Boebert during an event in her district over the Thanksgiving break launched into what she described as a “jihad squad” moment at the U.S. Capitol.
Boebert said she and a staffer were in an open elevator and noticed an alarmed police officer running for the door as it closed.
“So I was getting into an elevator with one of my staffers. You know, we’re leaving the Capitol and we’re going back to my office, and we get an elevator and I see a Capitol police officer running to the elevator. I see fret all over his face, and he’s reaching, and the door’s shutting, like I can’t open it, like what’s happening. I look to my left, and there she is. Ilhan Omar.
“And I said, ‘Well, she doesn’t have a backpack, we should be fine,'” she quipped.
The audience laughed and applauded.
“We only had one floor to go,” Boebert continued. “I said, ‘Oh look, the jihad squad decided to show up for work today.'”
The audience cheered again.
“Don’t worry,” said Boebert, “it’s just her staffers on Twitter that talk for her, she’s not tough in person. So … there’s a little bit of interactions with these folks.”
Omar, one of the first Muslim women elected to Congress, called on House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to take “appropriate action” against Boebert.
“Saying I am a suicide bomber is no laughing matter,” she wrote on Twitter. “Normalizing this bigotry not only endangers my life but the lives of all Muslims. Anti-Muslim bigotry has no place in Congress.”