Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) on Tuesday, Nov. 12 dismissed Rep. Ilhan Omar’s (D-Minn.) statements when she claimed the Long Island congressman to be an Islamophobe and “good riddance” in a not-so-friendly tweet after announcements of his resignation had been made.
Omar in a Nov. 11 tweet denounced King as an “Islamophobe who held McCarthyite hearings targeting American Muslims” and accused him of “[blaming] Eric Garner for his own death at the hands of police.”
King rejected Omar’s accusations and called it “a great compliment” given the source from where these claims came.
During an appearance on Fox News’s “The Story” on Tuesday, King told host Martha MacCallum that Omar’s statements couldn’t be further from the truth.
“My concern was that political correctness was getting in the way of counterterrorism and solid law enforcement,” King explained. “When we went after the mafia we went into the Italian American community. When we went after the Westies we went into the Iranian American community. The fact is that radical Islam extremists were in the Muslim community.
King dismissed Omar’s claims, explaining that his 2011 hearings had nothing against Muslims but in actuality intended to lend a hand to Americans who were victims of domestic radicalization by elucidating the situation.
“Maybe it’s 1 percent, less than 1 percent of the population, but we had a situation where it was considered politically incorrect to carry out ordinary surveillance and police all over the country were telling me that they were not getting the cooperation from within the Muslim community that was needed,” King continued. “People talk about this being an anti-Muslim hearing—the key witnesses there testifying for me, two of them were Muslims and the third was an African American whose son had converted to Islam and had been taken over to Somalia to fight with al-Shabab … and when he came home he ended up killing American military.”
The King reiterated that he never said what Omar claimed he had said regarding having “too many mosques in this country.”
“I never said that. I said there were too many mosques that were not cooperating with law enforcement,” King said. “And it was in her district that was seduced to go over to Somalia and was killed, and the good Muslims in that community were warned not to cooperate with law enforcement.”
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) expressed great respect toward King after he announced his resignation.
“Peter King stood head & shoulders above everyone else,” Schumer said in a tweet on Tuesday. “He’s been principled & never let others push him away from his principles.”
“He fiercely loved America, Long Island, and his Irish heritage and left a lasting mark on all 3,” Schumer said, adding, “I will miss him in Congress & value his friendship.”