Shanelle Jackson, a Democratic challenger for Rashida Tlaib’s House seat, says it’s time to shut down the Palestinian-American lawmaker’s “extreme, antisemitic rhetoric.”
By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News
Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) is facing a Democratic challenger for her seat in fall 2022 who isn’t shy about challenging the Palestinian-American lawmaker on her vocally anti-Israel remarks.
Shanelle Jackson, who served as a Michigan state representative for five years, told Jewish Insider last Friday that it was time for someone to call out Tlaib for her vehemently anti-Israel statements.
“When she gets that mic in front of her, she goes crazy and goes to many extremes,” Jackson said of Tlaib.
“I really feel like it’s now or never as it pertains to being able to sort of shut her down and calm down some of the antisemitic rhetoric.”
While Tlaib, a progressive member of the so-called “Squad” of left-wing Congressional representatives, has denied that she is antisemitic, she has made a number of comments about Israel that have raised concerns among Jewish advocacy organizations.
Most recently, Tlaib voted against funding for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system, saying on the House floor that she “will not support an effort to enable and support war crimes, human rights abuses, and violence.”
Later, she added that Israel perpetuates a “violent apartheid system.”
Jackson said she believes that Tlaib, who is vocally opposed to a two-state solution, is unnecessarily creating issues between the two allied nations.
“Just saying it real plain,” Jackson told Jewish Insider, “I believe that the United States and Israel are sisters, and I can’t imagine living in a world where our nation didn’t have Israel’s back. It’s heartbreaking, to be honest with you, to have Rep. Tlaib not even wanting to explore that path.”
Although Jackson lost to Tlaib in 2018, she’s optimistic that redistricting, along with backlash over Tlaib’s far-left policies, could lead to her beating the incumbent in the fall.
“I’ve been rallying the troops,” Jackson said. “I think there’s a great opportunity there.”