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Trump Smears Congresswomen While Pressuring Israel to Ban Them: ‘They Hate Israel & All Jewish People’

President Donald Trump pressured Israel to ban several U.S. lawmakers from the country on Thursday, smearing the congresswomen by claiming they  “hate Israel” and “all Jewish people.”

The congresswomen in question are Rep. Ilhan Omar and Rep. Rashida Tlaib, whose planned visit to Israel has been thrown into question.

“It would show great weakness if Israel allowed Rep. Omar and Rep.Tlaib to visit. They hate Israel & all Jewish people, & there is nothing that can be said or done to change their minds. Minnesota and Michigan will have a hard time putting them back in office. They are a disgrace!” Trump wrote.

Reports have circulated that the Israeli government is weighing blocking Tlaib and Omar from entering the country because of their support for the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement. The two congresswomen support the movement in protest for Israel’s treatment of Palestinians living in disputed territories. News of their ban was seemingly confirmed on Thursday by Israeli journalist Dana Weiss:

CNN’s Maju Raju noted that Trump’s tweet comes on the heels of Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham’s pushback on reports that the president told Benjamin Netanyahu to not let Omar and Tlaib into Israel. At the same time, Grisham said that White House wouldn’t discourage the prime minister’s decision, saying “the Israeli government can do what it wants.”

Trump’s attacks on the Tlaib and Omar come weeks after a firestorm he created for himself with racist tweets telling them and other progressive congresswomen to “go back” to the countries they came from (Tlaib was born in the U.S., Omar became an American citizen after fleeing Somalia as a child). Trump’s attacks on Omar were especially controversial, particularly after he held a rally where he let his supporters chant “send her back” for over 10 seconds after attacking her.

UPDATE – 12:46 p.m. ET: Trump wasn’t done yet.

[Photo via Mark Wilson/Getty Images]

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