Representative Rashida Tlaib teared up while defending herself on the House floor in the face of numerous GOP attempts to censure and even expel her from the legislative body.
“I can’t believe I have to say this, but Palestinian people are not disposable,” Tlaib said Tuesday, gripping the lectern as her voice cracked.
“We are human beings, just like anyone else,” she said.
Tlaib, the only Palestinian American in Congress, has been the subject of intense debate since she spoke at a peaceful Jewish-led protest in D.C. last month that called for a cease-fire in Gaza. Since then, the Michigan Democrat has used her platform to amplify the plight and suffering of Palestine, where more than 10,000 people have perished while Israel’s military hunts for Hamas militants behind the October 7 massacre in which 1,400 civilians were killed.
In her speech, Tlaib argued that “no government is beyond criticism” and that the notion that criticizing a government could be antisemitic “sets a very dangerous precedent,” which is being used to “silence many diverse voices.”
“Speaking up to save lives, Mr. Chair, no matter faith, no matter ethnicity, should not be controversial in this chamber,” Tlaib added. “The cries of the Palestinian and Israeli children sound no different to me. What I don’t understand is why the cries of Palestinians sound different to you all.”