Republicans in Illinois are apologizing after a Facebook post calling four members of Congress the “Jihad Squad” was shared on the Republican County Chairmen’s Association of Illinois Facebook page, per a report from RollCall.
The post targeted the same four freshman congresswoman who have been the subject of attacks from President Trump, which include Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota.
As Roll Call noted, the Facebook post featured a fictional movie poster with edited images of the four congresswomen, who are all women of color. The image showed Ocasio-Cortez wearing a red gown set ablaze, Tlaib appearing to scream, Pressley edited to be pointed a handgun, and Omar standing larger above them all.
The fake movie poster also had the group’s logo on it, The Chicago Tribune noted.
The text accompanying the image targeted the lawmakers’ political views.
“Political jihad is their game,” the Facebook post said. “If you don’t agree with their socialist ideology, you’re racist.”
Illinois Republicans later spoke out to condemn the post after it received backlash in the post’s comments, per The Chicago Tribune.
“I condemn this unauthorized posting and it has been deleted. I am sorry if anyone who saw the image was offended by the contents,” Mark Shaw, president of the chairmen’s association, said according to Roll Call.
Illinois GOP Chairman Tim Schneider said the post contained “bigoted rhetoric,” and urged party members to focus disagreements with the congresswomen on their policies rather than religion or race, per The Chicago Tribune.
The post was originally shared on Friday, but went largely unnoticed until later in the weekend, The Chicago Tribune noted.
This is on the Illinois Republican County Chairmen’s Association’s Facebook site: pic.twitter.com/0qzKsiRzzq
— Rick Pearson (@rap30) July 21, 2019
All four of the lawmakers are United States citizens. Three of the four were born in the United States, though Rep. Omar was born in Somalia and came to the United States as a refugee as a child.
The group of congresswomen has been referred to recently as a “squad” for their similar progressive policies and regular criticism of President Trump.
Last week the president took to Twitter to tell the four representatives to “go home” to their ancestral countries. While many, including members of Congress have called the President’s statements racist, Trump has continued to refuse to apologize.
Later in the week at a rally for the president’s re-election campaign, Trump supporters in the audience directed a chant of “Send her back!” toward Rep. Omar. Trump later distanced himself from that rhetoric, telling reporters that it was his fans who started it, not him. But the President would later backtrack those comments, per Vox.
In an interview with CBS’s Face The Nation this weekend, Vice President Mike Pence said he wasn’t a fan of the chant, but declined to urge Trump supporters to not use the chant in the future.
Per a previous report from The Inquisitr, the president has renewed his attacks on the women, flipping the table and accusing the women of racism.
According to Roll Call, the group said it would review its policy for determining how posts are shared on its page.