Joe Rogan defended Rep. Ilhan Omar’s, D-Minn., controversial 2019 remark “it’s all about the Benjamins” on Saturday, claiming it wasn’t antisemitic.
In 2019, Omar responded to criticism of her about her views on the U.S. relationship with Israel, “It’s all about the Benjamins baby.” The remark was blasted as antisemitic and invoking Jewish stereotypes. The House voted in earlier this month to kick Omar off the House Foreign Affairs Committee, citing her past controversial remark.
Rogan mentioned her ousting while talking to Breaking Points hosts Krystal Ball and Saagar Enjeti on his podcast. Rogan mocked Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Ca., for being allowed to remain in politics after his involvement with enabling Russia conspiracies about former President Trump, but went on to defend Omar, citing her speech as she left the committee.
“She’s apologizing for talking about ‘it’s all about the Benjamins,’ which is just about money, she’s talking about money. That’s not an antisemitic statement. I don’t think that is. Benjamins are money,” Rogan said. “The idea that Jewish people are not into money is ridiculous, that’s like saying that Italians aren’t into pizza.”
Ball agreed saying there is an “obvious reason” why there is bipartisan consensus when it comes to Israel.
“She could have phrased it a different way so that people would have less of a freakout. But can you not talk about the influence of money in D.C.?” She asked. “There’s a very obvious reason why for my entire life there’s been a uniparty consensus about our policy vis-à-vis the Israeli government and a total inability or unwillingness to criticize the Israeli government, and it has everything to do with organization and yes, money, just like every other f—ing interest in DC.”
“She, whether you agree with her or not, she has a bold opinion, and that opinion is not her own, there’s many people that have that opinion, and they should be represented,” Rogan later added. “The point is, she’s sitting next to Adam Schiff and no one says s–t. She doesn’t say ‘yeah I shouldn’t have said that, hey motherf—er, what did YOU say?'”
Rogan went on to slam Schiff, “he said some crazy s–t that wasn’t true at all.”’
Ball condemned Schiff for his involvement feeding conspiracies about Trump and Russia, noting it was bad for the country.
“He fed it so hard, and then you look at that, and what a disservice it was, what a giant elaborate conspiracy was constructed to distract the American people from so many more important things that were going on,” noting he is, “very likely to be the next senator from California.”
Enjeti said the whole situation was “funny in terms of what you’re not allowed to say, what you get censored off a committee for.” He said that while he doesn’t agree with Omar on many issues, he said he doesnt’ “think it should be out-of-bounds to talk about influence of any government, including the Saudi government, of which a lot of these people are on the take of.”
“The hypocrisy drives me f—ing crazy,” Enjeti added.
“It’s crazy,” Rogan replied.