According to The Washington Free Beacon, Rashida Tlaib may not have been completely forthcoming. After Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib were denied entry into Israel based on their support for BDS, (Anti Israel movement, Boycott, Divest, and Sanctions movement) Tlaib was offered an exception to go visit her ‘sity’ or grandmother. Ironically, although Democrats are profusely defending Omar and Tlaib, the left-leaning Anti Defamation League has BDS listed on their site as:
The campaign to delegitimize Israel is being waged across the globe: The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS), which rejects Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state, is the most prominent effort to undermine Israel’s existence. The BDS campaign is rampant with misinformation and distortion. ADL responds to BDS threats through advocacy and education, and we recently partnered with Reut Institute to develop in-depth analysis and strategic initiatives to marginalize and expose the illegitimacy of the BDS movement.
Congresswoman Tlaib issued an official statement on why she would not be accepting the offer to travel to go see her grandmother, as can be seen below:
SEE TWEET FROM @RepRashida BELOW:
SEE TWEET FROM @IfNotNowOrg BELOW:
"I stand by my congresswoman in demanding accountability from the Israeli government. I stand by her in the face of racist, Islamophobic attacks by those who seek to pit my Jewish community against Muslims."— IfNotNow? (@IfNotNowOrg) August 20, 2019
Rosa, an IfNotNow member, spoke alongside @IlhanMN & @RashidaTlaib. pic.twitter.com/D8ryUWC1KZ
The original sponsor of the planned trip for Congresswomen Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib was to be paid for by an anti-Israel group, ‘Miftah’. Upon being granted permission to go see her Grandmother though, it would have been a personal trip, not to be paid for by Miftah, or anyone else but herself apparently.
“When Congresswoman Tlaib reapplied for entry into Israel for the sole purpose of visiting her grandmother, she made the entire trip a personal matter,” said one senior aide. “At that point going on her original trip and allowing the sponsoring group to pay for anything would constitute an illegal gift.”
“That’s why she couldn’t go, if she got on that plane she’d probably be breaking the law by accepting an illegal gift,” the aide said.
Kendra Arnold, executive director for the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust, said ethics rules are clear on personal travel.
“Once the trip’s purpose was for a personal matter, the trip should not be funded by taxpayer dollars or gifts from individuals or entities,” Arnold said, adding that Tlaib’s case would not qualify for any of the exceptions to the rule.
“The House Ethics Rules broadly prohibit a Member from accepting anything of value from anyone in either a personal or official capacity, unless the gift falls under one of the explicit exceptions,” Arnold said. “There does not appear to be an exception that would apply in this circumstance to personal travel.”
The House ethics manual states that travel paid for by a private third party must be in connection with the member’s official responsibilities (pg. 90). The committee approves trips only after it is determined the trip relates to matters of Congress and an itinerary shows “officially-connected activities scheduled to take place during the trip.”
Travel guidelines laid out by the Committee on Ethics state clearly that “travel for personal or recreational purposes” cannot be part of “officially-connected” trips paid for by a private party.
We don’t know for sure if this is the real reason she decided not to go, or if it was to spite Benjamin Netanyahu and Israel for not letting her travel with Ilhan Omar under the original plans, but this story is certainly worth pointing out.
One might draw the conclusion that these two congresswomen, especially Tlaib, and more broadly ‘The Squad’ (Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley, and AOC) are using this ban as a way to advance their agendas even further and draw more attention to themselves. In today’s society, nothing seems more powerful than victimhood when it comes to getting your voice heard.
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