At a Friday rally in front of 26 Federal Plaza Congresswoman Yvette Clarke compared government agencies to the Gestapo, and likened Trumps’ policies to those of the Nazis, drawing swift and bitter condemnation.
On the eve of Holocaust Memorial Day congresswoman Yvette Clarke (D-Brooklyn), whose district includes Crown Heights, set off a firestorm after incendiary comments she made at a rally outside 26 Federal Plaza in Manhattan.
“We’re standing in front of a building that has become the headquarters for the Gestapo of the United States of America,” Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-Brooklyn) told a crowd of about 50 at a rally in Manhattan’s Federal Plaza. “We will not sit quietly as [Trump’s] administration attacks hardworking people who contribute positively to this country,” Clarke said.
Clarkes comments came at a rally against the deportation Ravi Ragbir, whose Jan. 10 detention led to the arrests of city council members Jumaane Williams and Ydanis Rodriguez.
Ragbir, 53, a native of Trinidad, was ordered to be deported in 2006 after serving a prison sentence for wire fraud and conspiracy.
Federal authorities permitted him to stay in the U.S. up to now, but the Trump administration wants to enforce the decade-old deportation order.
The congresswoman’s comments are particularly troubling and offensive coming on the eve of Holocaust Memorial Day, and given that a large number of her constituents include the Jewish residents of Crown Heights – many of whom are the descendants of holocaust survivors.
“Unacceptable! As a fellow democrat I call on [Rep. Yevette Calrke] to apologize for her comments on Holocaust Remembrance Day,” said community activist Yaacov Behrman.
Adem Bunkeddeko, who is challenging Clarke in the upcoming primaries, called her remarks deeply insensitive and does nothing to help meaningful immigration reforms.
“Trump’s immigration policies are a disaster and an attack on our core American values, but it’s deeply insensitive of the Congressmember to compare them to the mass murder committed by the Nazi regime, especially in light of Holocaust Remembrance Day; and her comments do nothing to help us pass DACA or pass meaningful immigration reforms that keep families together,” he said in statement.
We reached out to her Jewish affairs liaison Eli Slavin, who had no comment and referred us to the congresswoman’s press office. As of publication our calls and messages have not been returned.