Rep. Dean Phillips, whose district covers the western suburbs of the Twin Cities including Bloomington, Eden Prairie and Edina, put his progressive colleagues on notice in a Monday tweet. The two-term congressman eviscerated the progressives for not putting as much gusto behind condemning anti-Semitism as they have other progressive priorities.
“I’ll say the quiet part out loud; it’s time for ‘progressives’ to start condemning anti-semitism and violent attacks on Jewish people with the same intention and vigor demonstrated in other areas of activism,” Phillips tweeted.
“The silence has been deafening,” the native of St. Paul, Minnesota added.
Phillips’ criticism comes amid a spike in anti-Semitic attacks in the U.S. following flaring tensions between Israel and Palestinian Authority-backed terror group Hamas sparked from rocket attacks launched indiscriminately at Jerusalem by the terror group.
“Conservatives call out violence in all forms and on all sides, those on the far left remain silent until political expediency loosens their lips,” freshman Rep. Madison Cawthorn, R-N.C., told Fox News on Monday.
“We must denounce anti-Semitism at every opportunity,” the first-term congressman added. “There is no place intolerant political thought for those who tout the endorsements of Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood abroad, but remain silent on anti-Semitic violence at home.”
Members of the “Squad” — the group of progressive Democrats led by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. — spoke out against the rising tide of anti-Semitism in the U.S. over the weekend, though some critics suggested that the lawmakers bear responsibility for inflaming anti-Jewish sentiments.
The lawmakers were torched by users online, who brought up the “Squad” members’ previous tweets that had referred to Israel as an “Apartheid” state and accused the Middle Eastern democracy of engaging in ethnic cleansing.
“While anti-Zionist gangs beat up Jews in her city, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was providing a quasi-intellectual basis for their actions, defaming Israel as an apartheid state employing indiscriminate force in what she seems to think is a capricious quest to murder as many Palestinian children as possible, instead of a highly restrained military operation tightly targeted on terrorists,” The American Jewish Committee global director of young leadership Seffi Kogan wrote.
Kogan added that Ocasio-Cortez “didn’t call for violence, but she carved out an area of respectability for a certain type of anti-Semitism, and others were only too happy to rush in, fists flying.”
Ocasio-Cortez and several members of the small, unofficial caucus spoke out against anti-Semitism outright while others, such as Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., mentioned anti-Semitism alongside Islamophobia or couching statements against anti-Semitism with critiques against Israel.
Fox News’ Tyler Olson contributed to this report.