Rep. Ilham Omar said death threats against her have spiked as a result of an inflammatory video that was shared by President Donald Trump on Twitter about a remark she made regarding the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
"I have experienced an increase in direct threats on my life – many directly referencing or replying to the President's video," she said in a statement Sunday night.
Last week, conservatives sharply criticized Omar, one of the first Muslim women ever elected to Congress, for remarks the Minnesota Democrat made at a March 23 Council on American-Islamic Relations event in Los Angeles. She said "some people did something" in reference to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people.
Omar's critics accused her of trivializing and minimizing the tragedy. Her defenders said those critics were ignoring the context of the speech in which she said Muslim Americans are treated as second-class citizens and have been punished collectively for the terrorist attacks committed by a small minority who share their faith.
On Friday, Trump posted a tweet reading, "WE WILL NEVER FORGET!" above a video of Omar's remarks repeated along with ominous music, played over images of the World Trade Center engulfed in flames.
The tweet had previously been pinned as the first one on the president's Twitter account. Although no longer the pinned tweet, it was still in his feed and the video had 10.1 million views as of 8 a.m. EDT on Monday.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Sunday that she was ordering U.S. Capitol Police to conduct a "security assessment" to ensure Rep. Ilhan Omar's safety after President Donald Trump posted an incendiary tweet about a remark Omar made regarding the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
"Following the President’s tweet, I spoke with the Sergeant-at-Arms to ensure that Capitol Police are conducting a security assessment to safeguard Congresswoman Omar, her family and her staff," Pelosi said in a statement. "They will continue to monitor and address the threats she faces."
"The President’s words weigh a ton, and his hateful and inflammatory rhetoric creates real danger. President Trump must take down his disrespectful and dangerous video."
In her statement, Omar thanked the "Capitol Police, the FBI, the House Sergeant at Arms, and the Speaker of the House for their attention to these threats."
"Violent crimes and other acts of hate by right-wing extremists and white nationalists are on the rise in this country and around the world," Omar said. "We can no longer ignore that they are being encouraged by the occupant of the highest office in the land."
She concluded, "We are all Americans. This is endangering lives. It has to stop."
On Monday, Trump tweeted that "Pelosi has lost all control of Congress." Before she "decides to defend her leader, Rep. Omar, she should look at the anti-Semitic, anti-Israel and ungrateful U.S. HATE statements Omar has made," he said.
"She is out of control, except for her control of Nancy!"
Before Nancy, who has lost all control of Congress and is getting nothing done, decides to defend her leader, Rep. Omar, she should look at the anti-Semitic, anti-Israel and ungrateful U.S. HATE statements Omar has made. She is out of control, except for her control of Nancy!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 15, 2019
On Saturday, former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke, a 2020 presidential candidate, called Trump's tweet an "incitement to violence."
"The president is not trying to incite violence against anybody. He’s actually speaking out against it," White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said on "Fox News Sunday" in response to the criticism of the president's tweet.
"That was one of the most horrific moments in American history and for her to talk about it in such a dismissive way is frankly disgusting and abhorrent, and I’m glad the president is calling her out and holding her accountable for it."
Omar, who previously sparked controversy with comments that were widely condemned as playing into anti-Semitic tropes, has said she has received many threats since taking office in January.
"This is a dangerous incitement, given the death threats I face," Omar tweeted in response to her conservative critics after her March 23 comments resurfaced last week on social media.
"I hope leaders of both parties will join me in condemning it. My love and commitment to our country and that of my colleagues should never be in question. We are ALL Americans!"
Omar also tried to defend herself with a tweet equating her description of the attack to one made by President George W. Bush days after that attack in which he vowed, "the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon!"
“The people — and the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon!” President George W. Bush— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) April 12, 2019
Was Bush downplaying the terrorist attack?
What if he was a Muslim 🤔 https://t.co/XMazssoD49
Earlier this month, a New York man was arrested on suspicion of threatening Omar, after he was alleged to have said he would "put a bullet" in her "skull."
In March, a poster was displayed in the West Virginia statehouse that implied Omar's election was "proof" people had forgotten 9/11. The display sparked a confrontation between Republican and Democratic lawmakers that led to one injury and one resignation.
"No wonder why I am on the 'Hitlist' of a domestic terrorist and 'Assassinate Ilhan Omar' is written on my local gas stations," Omar tweeted in response to news of the incident.
'This puts me in danger': Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez blames GOP groups for death threats
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 'This is endangering lives': Ilhan Omar claims spike in death threats after Trump tweet