Joe Lieberman
Joe LiebermanReuters

Former US Senator Joe Lieberman, a Democrat who later became an Independent, said in an interview broadcast Sunday that the Democratic Party "is not an anti-Jewish party" but that it has members who say anti-Semitic things, The Hill reported.

"The Democratic Party is not an anti-Jewish party, but there are some people in the party now, including in Congress as we've seen from Congresswoman Omar...who are saying explicitly anti-Semitic things," Lieberman, who is Jewish, was quoted as having said in an interview on AM 970 in New York.

He was referring to the anti-Semitic remarks by Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) which caused an uproar in recent weeks.

Omar recently came under fire after she suggested on Twitter that Republicans were attacking her at the behest of the pro-Israel lobby AIPAC.

She subsequently issued a half-hearted apology before ultimately deleting the controversial tweets.

Omar later caused another uproar when, at a public event, she appeared to refer to domestic support for Israel as “allegiance to a foreign country”.

The remarks led the Democratic leadership in the House of Representatives to work on a new resolution condemning anti-Semitism. However, the resolution was watered down to include condemnation of all forms of bigotry after objections from some Democrats. The watered-down version was ultimately approved by an overwhelming majority.

Following the approval of the resolution, President Donald Trump ripped the Democrats, telling reporters that the Democratic party has become an “anti-Israel” and “anti-Jewish” party.

He later reportedly doubled down on the criticism, telling a closed-door meeting of Republican donors that “the Democrats hate Jewish people.”

Lieberman’s comments on Sunday follow his warning earlier this month that if the Democratic party continues to delay the resolution to condemn anti-Semitism, they are “going to be held more broadly accountable for having similar feelings.”

“I think it is very important for the House to act and act directly. It sounds like the resolution that they are drafting now which was originally against anti-Semitism all though clearly it was engendered by what Congressman Omar had said is being broadened to be a statement against anti-Muslim bias. Of course, we should make that statement but I think the House could do better,” he told Fox News Channel.

"I say this is a moment of testing, moral testing. Speak clearly about it. Make clear to the congresswoman that she went over the line, it’s unacceptable. And you make clear to the next person who is thinking about expressing some other kind of bigotry that it’s not going to be tolerated,” added Lieberman.