Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., is facing a tougher-than-expected primary, with a better-funded challenger claiming Omar's campaign is “falling apart.”
Omar quickly became a national political star -- and the source of significant controversy -- since winning her 5th District seat in 2018.
One of the first Muslim women (along with Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich.) to be elected to Congress, Omar is a key member of the influential left-wing group of female representatives known as the "Squad."
As one of the most vocal progressives in the chamber, she has feuded with President Trump and made a series of controversial statements, including about Israel, that have drawn rebukes and accusations of anti-Semitism.
Ahead of the Aug. 11 Democratic primary, Omar is facing a strong challenge from attorney Antone Melton-Meaux, who has raised more money and accused her of focusing on her national profile rather than her constituents.
“She has been ineffective in Washington because she is divisive, and she’s focused on her celebrity,” Melton-Meaux told The Associated Press.
Omar has brushed off claims that she has ignored her constitutents: “I show up not only in the district, but in Congress to fight for us, for our progressive values, and that is the consistency in which I do my work."
Omar is also facing questions about payments made to her husband’s firm, which has reportedly received more than a million dollars from her campaign during the 2020 cycle. She was recently asked specifically about $600,000 that went to her husband’s firm in the first three weeks of July.
“I don't pay my husband. I pay the firm to do work and that [$600,000] really is an example of that work,” she said at a recent debate. "It was the first time we placed a TV ad, which is surprising to me because that's not something we're used to in the 5th, and that money went to place that ad and to make sure we have digital ads, to make sure we have literature that's being sent to our constituents, because it is get-out-the-vote efforts for us.”
Melton-Meaux is facing questions of his own. WCCO reports that the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor (DFL) party recently filed a complaint alleging he illegally concealed the identities of his campaign consultants a... (Read more)
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