This comes from the Daily Mail which has labeled it an exclusive. The big caveat here is that there’s no confirmation of this claim from Omar, from her husband, or from her office. The Daily Mail is basing this on Omar apparent change in living arrangements:
Omar has now dumped her current husband Ahmed Hirsi – who she first married in a religious ceremony in 2002 and divorced in 2008 – and moved into a penthouse apartment in one of Minneapolis’s trendiest neighborhoods, DailyMail.com has learned exclusively.
But Hirsi, is also spending time at the apartment, which is just a block from the Mississippi River in the Mill District sector of Minnesota’s largest city, when she is out of town.
‘Wow,’ said Hirsi, when approached about the split by DailyMail.com outside the complex. ‘I can’t comment on that…
‘He only goes there when Ilhan is in DC,’ one family friend told DailyMail.com. ‘When she’s in Minneapolis he sleeps at his house.’
That’s about the extent of the confirmation in this report. The husband and Omar’s office won’t deny it and an anonymous source says they are living apart. The DM headline mentions them heading for divorce but there’s nothing in the story to support that. It seems to be an inference based on the current living arrangements. But there could be other explanations. Maybe this is a temporary separation?
Obviously, the reason this is news, assuming it proves to be accurate, is that Omar has already been under a fair amount of scrutiny for her unusual marital history. She originally married her current husband Ahmed Hirsi in 2002 but that marriage was religious and not legal. In 2008 they separated and the following year she married Ahmed Elmi, this time legally. However, Elmi apparently left in 2011 and Omar got back together with Hirsi. They had their 3rd child in 2012 while she was still legally married to Elmi. In 2017, Omar legally divorced Elmi and then married Hirsi legally in 2018.
Adding to the confusion is that fact that Omar filed joint tax returns with Hirsi in at least two years, 2014 and 2015, while she was still legally married to Elmi. That’s illegal under state law and it’s not clear if there were other years where she did the same. But Omar has remained completely mum about all of this, including the rumors that her marriage to Elmi was some sort of sham for immigration purposes.
While some have been eager to dismiss this as nothing more than the product of the right-wing fever swamp, actual attempts to investigate the story have been inconclusive. Here’s Politifact, definitely not a right-wing outlet, talking to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune politics editor about the fact that his paper couldn’t resolve this story one way or the other, mostly because Omar and her family won’t talk about it.
Earlier this week, Judicial Watch filed a House Ethics complaint alleging, among other things, marriage fraud. So while it’s probably too early to say for sure what’s happening with Omar’s current marriage based on this one report, given her unusual marital history and her determined refusal to talk about it, it could be a while before we know anything for certain.