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On Saturday, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) responded to news that a New York man had been arrested for making death threats against Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-N.Y.) by discussing comments from Fox News host Jeanine Pirro, Newsweek reports.
“Understand when Jeanine Pirro goes on Fox + rallies people to think hijabs are threatening, it leads to this. Folks who imply we’re ‘bad’ for politics, the party, the country, etc. have no idea the threats we deal w/ because of that kind of language. Talk policy, not personal,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted.
Understand when Jeanine Pirro goes on Fox + rallies people to think hijabs are threatening, it leads to this.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) April 7, 2019
Folks who imply we’re “bad” for politics, the party, the country, etc. have no idea the threats we deal w/ because of that kind of language.
Talk policy, not personal. https://t.co/udFg3LMdgB
Ocasio-Cortez was apparently referring to Pirro’s recent Islamophobic remarks on her show. Last month, Pirro commented on Omar’s hijab, and questioned whether her religious beliefs were in line with the Constitution. Fox News rebuked the comments.
Ocasio-Cortez discussed Pirro’s rhetoric in the context of the reported actions of Patrick Carlineo Jr., who allegedly called Omar’s offices last month and threatened to “put a bullet in her fucking skull.”
According to a statement from the Department of Justice on Friday, Carlineo allegedly asked an employee, “Do you work for the Muslim Brotherhood,” then called Omar a terrorist.
Omar’s offices referred the phone call to the United States Capitol Police, which then worked with the FBI to investigate the incident.
If convicted, Carlineo could face a $250,000 fine, up to 10 years in prison, or both. Carlineo’s detention hearing is set for April 10.
Omar has faced death threats before; in February, Coast Guard lieutenant Christopher Hasson was arrested after he allegedly stockpiled weapons and threatened Democratic lawmakers, including Omar. Hasson has pleaded not guilty to drug and weapons charges against him and has not been charged with any terrorism-related crimes, according to the Washington Post.
Ellen Ioanes is the FOIA reporter at the Daily Dot, where she covers U.S. politics. She is a graduate of Columbia Journalism School, and her work has appeared in the Guardian, the Center for Public Integrity, HuffPost India, and more.