Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) offered to contribute to a ticket to Somalia for Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (D-MN), a former refugee and American citizen who escaped violence in her birth country of Somalia as a child. Paul's comments come weeks after President Donald Trump's racist tweets against four congresswomen of color, including Omar, suggesting they "go back" to their countries.
I’d be curious to see polling on Rand Paul’s statements. What percentage of American Democrats agree with the senti… https://t.co/krCl8LNIss— Mike (@Mike) 1564396589.0
“Well, [Omar] came here and we fed her, we clothed her, she got welfare, she got [schooling], she got healthcare, and then, lo and behold, she has the honor of actually winning a seat in Congress, and she says we’re a terrible country?" Paul said. "I think that’s about as ungrateful as you can get.”
“And so — I’m willing to contribute to buy her a ticket to go visit Somalia, and I think she can look and maybe learn a little bit about the disaster that is Somalia — that has no capitalism, has no God-given rights guaranteed in a constitution, and has about seven different tribes that have been fighting each other for the last 40 years, and then maybe after she’s visited Somalia for a while, she might come back and appreciate America more.”
People found Paul's words to be patronizing and offensive.
I'm sitting here laughting at the idea that legacy case Rand Paul, a guy who got into politics because of Daddy's c… https://t.co/QmLvBgnOco— Chris Hayes (@Chris Hayes) 1564367850.0
If @RandPaul wanted to save a few bucks he could invite @IlhanMN to Kentucky where she can tour 10 of America’s wor… https://t.co/a6VooydB4b— Col. Morris Davis (@Col. Morris Davis) 1564368185.0
.@RandPaul is garbage. https://t.co/mGagbrcL6c— Justin Hendrix (@Justin Hendrix) 1564373120.0
@SaraCarterDC @RandPaul @IlhanMN Is @RandPaul just a moron? He doesn’t know @IlhanMN ‘s story?! If Rand spent less… https://t.co/KsjsKDAFDr— Jamie Schler (@Jamie Schler) 1564371074.0
This is a absurd statement, even by Rand Paul standards. If there is anyone who knows the challenges Somalia has fa… https://t.co/TxqvQU5OY3— John Nichols (@John Nichols) 1564371905.0
Paul's words also present the expectation that citizens like Omar, who has been a naturalized American for over two decades, don't have the right to criticize the United States or question is policies.
With all due respect, sir, coming to this country as a refugee doesn’t entail waiving the right to any and all crit… https://t.co/7MkHSEqOjA— Julia Ioffe (@Julia Ioffe) 1564372207.0
@RandPaul U.S. Senator for Kentucky | I fight for the Constitution, individual liberty and the freedoms that make t… https://t.co/nEm3HUpjR2— Warren Reid Jr (@Warren Reid Jr) 1564421933.0
@SaraCarterDC @RandPaul @IlhanMN So intellectually dishonest. The conditions in Somalia have nothing to do with a c… https://t.co/G7W9rOyMQT— Ellen Corbet 🌊 (@Ellen Corbet 🌊) 1564414914.0
@SaraCarterDC @RandPaul @IlhanMN @RandPaul criticizes America as much as anyone. What the hell does @IlhanMN comin… https://t.co/MQyG6dHBrX— Asterisk Infarction/Embolism 2019 (@Asterisk Infarction/Embolism 2019) 1564411554.0
Speaking of appreciating America more, it's worth noting that Paul was recently one of only two senators to vote against permanently funding healthcare for 9/11's first responders.