Rashida Tlaib’s Staffer Hits Fox News Reporter While Blocking Him

A member of Rashida Tlaib’s staff hit a conservative reporter with an umbrella when he questioned the lawmaker on her view of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Fox News correspondent Chad Pergram asked Tlaib how she feels about House Speaker Mike Johnson’s announcement that Netanyahu will address Congress. At that point, the staffer deployed the umbrella. Pergram then approached a nearby police officer to complain of assault, saying, “That’s ridiculous.” 

Speaker Johnson announced Netanyahu’s planned joint address on May 23 during a speech marking Israel’s Independence Day. Johnson did not say precisely when Mr. Netanyahu’s visit would occur but emphasized the importance of supporting the Israeli government “in their time of greatest need.” 

Senate Leader Chuck Schumer agreed to issue a joint invitation to Israel’s leader after speaking to Mr. Johnson for some weeks. It will be the first time Netanyahu has addressed Congress since 2015, and several Democrats have already stated that they intend to boycott his speech. 

Rep. Jan Schakowsky of Illinois, who describes Netanyahu as “a menace,” told reporters she will not attend. Rep. Jim Himes, who sits on the House Intelligence Committee, described Netanyahu’s visit as controversial and divisive, while Rep. Scott Peters of California said, “There will be discomfort.”

The Israeli leader’s planned address comes at a time of growing tension over his government’s handling of the war with the terror group Hamas and an International Criminal Court (ICC) warrant request for Mr. Netanyahu’s arrest. ICC Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan requested the warrants in mid-May and appeared to compare Netanyahu with senior Hamas leaders, prompting outrage from Israel. 

President Biden subsequently clarified his position and said the US does not recognize ICC jurisdiction and there is no just comparison between Israel and Hamas. Nevertheless, analysts say the President exacerbated tensions with the Jewish state when he announced America would not provide weapons for Israel’s military campaign in Rafah in southern Gaza, which Netanyahu describes as the last remaining Hamas stronghold in the region.