Ilhan Omar – the first Black Muslim woman to become a member of congress – has ruffled a lot of feathers during her time in office.
Many right-wing personalities and politicians, including the president, have spread conspiracy theories about her – such as saying she married her brother and that she was taking 'dirty money' from various organisations.
In the most recent case – Rudy Giuliani, the former mayor of New York City who briefly served in the Trump administration, shared a meme on Twitter which implied that Omar was secretly a member of the terrorist group, Al-Qaeda.
Giuliani originally shared the photo and even added, “Could we see the whole photo?” The account that he shared it from seemed to share other conspiracy theories, particularly around QAnon and Trump.
Omar replied and pointed out that this photo was taken before she was born.
The tweet by Giuliani was removed not long after Omar had replied, although it had already received over 10,000 likes and retweets by that point.
Omar pointed out that the Associated Press had even said that it was one of their archival photos, taken four years before she was born. She had dealt with the same image being circulated by conspiracy theorists last year too.
Omar had already fact-checked this last year, after a senator from North Dakota had shared that meme.
In an interview with the Daily Beast, Omar asked why tech platforms weren’t doing enough to stop misinformation and hatred proliferating on their websites, and why posts like the one that Giuliani tweeted were allowed to circulate when they were demonstrably false.
The majority of the death threats that come into my office are not due to actual things I have said or done. They are literally due to things that are made up. And to have a platform continue to give stuff like that an ability to exist is not only dangerous to me, but it's dangerous, really, to our democracy and the fabric of our society.
Indy100 has contacted Rudy Giuliani for comment.