US House censors Representative Paul Gosar, expels him from committees

WASHINGTON – The United States House voted Wednesday 223-207 to censor Arizona Republican Representative Paul Gosar and strip him of his committee duties, following his social media post of a manipulated cartoon Representative attacking Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and President Joe Biden.

Republican Representatives Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois voted with all Democrats present for the resolution. Rep. David Joyce, R-Ohio, voted present. Republican Representatives Morgan Griffith of Virginia, Barry Loudermilk of Georgia and Scott Perry of Pennsylvania did not vote.

Gosar stood outside the House floor as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi read the censorship aloud to him.

When called to listen, several Republicans rallied behind him. They included Reps Matt Gaetz of Florida, Andy Biggs of Arizona, and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, among others.

In addition to the formal reprimand communicated by censorship, Gosar will be removed from his post on the House Government Oversight and Reform Committee and the House Natural Resources Committee, a key panel for a member of the Where is.

Iowa Rep. Ashley Hinson, a Republican, voted against censorship while condemning Gosar’s action in a statement.

“Any form of violent rhetoric is unacceptable and as elected officials with large platforms we must set the example that we want the rest of the country to follow,” she said.

Hinson, however, complained that Pelosi did not raise censorship measures against Democrats accused of misconduct. “Responsibility for wrongdoing should not be determined by your party, but it is the uneven standard that President Pelosi has decided to set,” Hinson said in a statement.

Iowa Republicans Randy Feenstra and Mariannette Miller-Meeks also voted against censorship, while Democrat Cindy Axne voted in favor.

Before debate on the resolution began on Wednesday, Gosar meandered around the floor of the House wearing a mask adorned with the American flag. He stuck to the back of the chamber of the Chamber.

Gosar flipped through papers, keeping his head down, as Pelosi during the debate berated him for his video. Pelosi said the cartoon depicts violence against women.

“These actions demand a response,” she said. “Representations of violence can incite real violence. “

She slammed Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy for taking more than a week to respond to Gosar’s social media post.

In the House, McCarthy of California did not address the video and instead criticized the policies of the Biden administration and said Wednesday’s vote was about Democrats wielding power.

He did not condemn Gosar or express his opposition to videos depicting violence against members of Congress.

Other Republicans who have spoken in the House to defend Gosar have done the same. They blamed Democrats for the border crisis, inflation and rising gas prices.

Ocasio-Cortez, who spoke to a row of female Democratic House members seated behind her, said it was unprecedented for a member of the leadership not to condemn an ​​act of violence against another member of the House. Congress.

“What’s so hard to say that’s wrong?” ” she said. “It’s not about me, it’s not about Rep. Gosar, it’s about what we’re willing to accept.”

Gosar: “I self-censored”

Gosar told the House that he rejects the idea that he is inciting violence.

“It was not my goal to anger anyone,” he said. “I voluntarily took the cartoon away, not because it was itself a threat, but because some thought it was. Out of compassion for those who took offense, I censored myself.

Gosar posted the cartoon to his official Twitter and Instagram accounts on November 7. It was showing a sequence with the faces of Gosar, Ocasio-Cortez, DN.Y. and Biden superimposed on anime characters.

The character with the face of Gosar swings swords at Ocasio-Cortez and Biden. Gosar then deleted the messages but did not apologize.

The video also included footage of Greene and Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo.

Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., Who wrote the censorship resolution, said Ocasio-Cortez had become a target for Republicans to piss off their base.

“As is often the case with women of color and frankly unacceptable,” she said.

She added that it took Gosar two days to remove the video and that it was seen by 3 million people by then.

Pelosi and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., Said Republicans should know words can incite violence, given the U.S. Capitol was attacked on Jan.6 by a mob. of pro-Trump supporters.

Several Democrats have cited the attack as a reason to take representations of violence seriously. Social media posts led to violence that day, said U.S. Representative Ted Deutch, D-Fla.

“Jan. 6 must serve as a reminder how important this action is that we are about to take,” he said.

Censorship has distilled in one afternoon the tensions and partisan divisions that have developed in the House since the attack on the Capitol.

While nearly everyone in the House initially condemned it, a growing number of Republicans have since downplayed its seriousness.

Hoyer mentioned Greene, who earlier this year encouraged violence against Democratic leaders on social media, and said violence against members of Congress was still unacceptable.

“No matter how you rationalize it, no matter how you try to put lipstick on that pig, it’s a threat of violence,” Hoyer said.

Greene, whom the House voted to remove from committees earlier this year, hugged Gosar as lawmakers voted on the no-confidence resolution. Boebert also joined them with Biggs.

Wednesday’s vote was the first no-confidence resolution in the House since a 2010 measure berating former Representative Charles B. Rangel, DN.Y., for mixing campaign and official resources.

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