Lauren Boebert

In this July 29, 2021, file photo, Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., speaks at a news conference held by members of the House Freedom Caucus on Capitol Hill in Washington. Boebert apologized on Friday, Nov. 26, 2021, for offending members of the Muslim community with remarks she made about Rep. Ilan Omar, D-Minn., suggesting Omar is a terrorist.

U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert faced mounting outrage and calls for GOP leaders to repudiate the Colorado Republican after remarks she made at a campaign event suggesting a Democratic lawmaker could be mistaken for a terrorist went viral on social media.

U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar, a Minnesota Democrat and one of two Muslim members of the U.S. House of Representatives, accused Boebert of making up a story about sharing an elevator with Omar, a Somali refugee who wears a hijab.

"Fact, this buffoon looks down when she sees me at the Capitol, this whole story is made up. Sad she thinks bigotry gets her clout," Omar tweeted Thursday night after a video clip of Boebert describing an encounter with Omar had received millions of views.

Added Omar: "Anti-Muslim bigotry isn’t funny & shouldn’t be normalized. Congress can’t be a place where hateful and dangerous Muslims tropes get no condemnation."

Boebert later apologized to "anyone in the Muslim community" she offended with the remarks, which appeared in an undated video clip posted online by Patriot Takes, a liberal organization formed to "research, monitor and expose the extremism and radicalization of the far right."

In the clip, Boebert said she was in an elevator at the Capitol with a staffer when she noticed a Capitol police officer running toward them "with fret all over his face" but was unable to stop the elevator doors from closing.

“What's happening?" Boebert said. "I look to my left, and there she is: Ilhan Omar. And I said, 'Well, she doesn't have a backpack, we should be fine.'" The comment sparked cheers and applause from her audience.

“So we only had one floor to go,” Boebert added. “I said, ‘Oh look, the 'jihad squad' decided to show up for work today.’ Don’t worry, it’s just her staffers on Twitter that talk for her. She’s not tough in person."

Boebert tweeted her apology Friday morning: "I apologize to anyone in the Muslim community I offended with my comment about Rep. Omar. I have reached out to her office to speak with her directly. There are plenty of policy differences to focus on without this unnecessary distraction."

A spokesman for Boebert referred to her tweet when asked for a comment on the remarks and Omar's contention that Boebert had fabricated the story.

Earlier Friday, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a national Muslim civil rights advocacy organization, called on House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and Republican leaders to repudiate what it termed "Boebert's Islamophobic smears."

In a statement, CAIR National Deputy Director Edward Ahmed Mitchell said: “Lauren Boebert’s disgusting remark about Congresswoman Ilhan Omar is merely the latest symptom of the anti-Muslim bigotry that has plagued the Republican caucus in the House for years. Leader McCarthy should repudiate Rep. Boebert’s remarks and call on all Republican members of Congress to treat their American Muslim colleagues and constituents with the respect and decency everyone deserves.”

U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger, an Illinois Republican routinely at odds with his caucus over its support for former President Donald Trump, ripped Boebert on Twitter and shared a post by a Republican hoping to unseat Boebert in next year's primary.

"Boebert is TRASH," Kinzinger tweeted, linking to the video of his colleague's remarks. He later retweeted a comment by Marina Zimmerman, a political newcomer who is challenging Boebert, who linked to Kinzinger's tweet and added, "Help me take out the trash."

Zimmerman told Colorado Politics she's heard Boebert tell "the same stupid story" about the run-in with Omar at several political events in recent months.

Boebert's remarks spurred widespread condemnation from Democrats.

"These pathetic racist lies will not only endanger the life of @IlhanMN, but will increase hate crimes towards Muslims," tweeted U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich, who is a member of the progressive "Squad" along with Omar. "The continued silence & inaction towards this hate-filled colleague and others is enabling violence. It must stop."

"Boebert is the ABSOLUTE WORST in this nation," tweeted state Rep. David Ortiz, D-Littleton, adding the hashtag "Racist."

Sol Sandoval, one of eight Democrats running for the nomination to challenge Boebert, tweeted that Boebert is "just a high school bully with a national platform."

"Real courage is a Congresswoman like Rep. Omar speaking truth to power on a daily basis," Sandoval added.