Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) sparked controversy Monday and drew accusations of anti-Semitism after criticizing President-elect Joe Biden’s appointment for secretary of state, Anthony Blinken.
After former Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders’s campaign manager praised the appointment, calling Blinken a “solid choice,” Tlaib tweeted: “So long as he doesn’t suppress my First Amendment right to speak out against Netanyahu’s racist and inhumane policies. The Palestinian people deserve equality and justice.”
CNN reporter Jake Tapper tweeted: “Blinken and Biden are both on the record opposing efforts to punish/sanction BDS (though they also oppose BDS) so I’m not sure what it is about Blinken that would prompt this tweet.”
Dov Hinkind, founder of the group Americans Against Antisemitism, tweeted, “Biden names a Jew to his cabinet … What’s Rashida’s response?! ‘Welp, as long as that Judische pick doesn’t stop me from focusing my hatred on one country, Israel, then he’s a good Jew!’ It’s not your 1A [first amendment] right you’re trying to protect but your vile Jew-hatred!”
The Republican Jewish Coalition posted a slightly tongue-in-cheek response, telling Tlaib she could “just say [she] was worried because Blinken is Jewish.”
On Sunday, the Bloomberg news agency reported that Biden was slated to make the official announcement about Blinken’s appointment on Tuesday.
Blinken, 58, has held senior foreign-policy positions in two administrations over the course of 20 years.
In 2008, he was a member of the Obama-Biden presidential transition team. From 2009 to 2013, he served as deputy assistant to the president and national security advisor to the vice president.
This article first appeared in Israel Hayom.