Harris’ office does damage control after she praises ‘ethnic genocide’ remark

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Harris' office does damage control after she praises 'ethnic genocide' remark

Vice President Kamala’s office has reportedly entered into damage-control mode with pro-Israel Democrats after she lavished praise on a college student who accused the Jewish state of committing “ethnic genocide.”

The veep on Tuesday addressed a class at George Mason University in northern Virginia to mark National Voter Registration Day before calling on students for questions.

A student who identified herself as “part-Yemeni, part-Iranian” claimed that “a lot of taxpayer money is allocated for funding the military, whether it’s in backing Saudi Arabia or in Palestine.”

Vice President Kamala Harris, right, speaks to students about voting rights, George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021.
The veep on Tuesday addressed a class at George Mason University.
AP

“You brought up how the power of the people and demonstrations and organizing is very valuable in America,” the woman told Harris.

“But I see that over the summer, there have been, like, protests and demonstrations in astronomical numbers standing with Palestine, but then just a few days ago there were funds allocated to continue backing Israel, which hurts my heart because it’s an ethnic genocide and a displacement of people — the same that happened in America — and I’m sure you’re aware of this,” she added.

The student said she felt the US was ignoring protests even though Harris had been discussing the power of demonstrating.

“Your voice, your perspective, your experience, your truth cannot be suppressed, and it must be heard,” Harris responded.

Her words drew immediate backlash from Israeli media outlets, including The Jerusalem Post and The Times of Israel, which ran headlines such as, “Kamala Harris doesn’t reject US student’s ‘ethnic genocide’ claim against Israel,” Politico reported.

David Friedman, the former US ambassador to Israel, denounced Harris’ statements, writing on Twitter: “Shameful. There is truth and there are lies. No one is entitled to their personal truth. This attack on Israel is simply a lie and VPOTUS should have called that out.”

Students hoping for a look at Vice President Kamala Harris line up at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021.
George Mason student flocked to see Kamala Harris speak.
AP

On Thursday, Harris’ office contacted the influential Democratic Majority for Israel to smooth over her remarks.

“We were pleased Vice President Harris’s senior staff reached out to us today to confirm what we already knew: Her ‘commitment to Israel’s security is unwavering,’” Mark Mellman, the group’s president, told Politico.

A senior adviser also reached out to Florida Democratic Rep. Ted Deutch, chairman of the Bipartisan Anti‐Semitism Taskforce, a source told the news outlet.

Deutch and his office did not respond to a request by Politico for comment, but the source told the outlet that it was “fair to say that the group of House Democrats that super care about this noticed it and talked about it.”

The source added that Harris’ office also called Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt on Thursday.

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