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The House of Representatives voted on Wednesday to censor Representative Paul Gosar and strip him of his committee duties by a total of 223-207, with one voting member present, after outrage over a cartoon he published from him killing Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
Two Republicans, Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, voted for the resolution, and Rep. David Joyce, R-Ohio voted “present.”
âPeople look up to us. They take our example. So when a member posts a video of himself killing a colleague, it’s obviously going to have an impact on how people approach their politics. therefore not dismiss Representative Gosar’s violence fantasies as a joke, âsaid Representative Mary Gay Scanlon, D-Pa., during the House debate on the matter. “In this decade, in this America, someone is going to take it seriously.”
Gosar’s censorship marks the 24th time in House history that the chamber has censored one of its members. This is the first time the House has censored a member since 2010 when it censored Representative Charlie Rangel, DN.Y., for ethics violations related to campaign fundraising. Prior to that, two members were censored for sexual misconduct with a house page in 1983.
“Is there a high school or workplace in America that wouldn’t do anything,” asked Representative Jamie Raskin, D-Md, in the debate over the resolution to censor Gosar.
Gosar, R-Arizona, tweeted the controversial cartoon last week. He used anime-style animation to depict him killing Ocasio-Cortez, DN.Y. and show him attacking President Biden. It was done by its congressional staff.
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Gosar said in a statement last week that the video was a “symbolic cartoon” on immigration policy.
“I do not espouse violence or evil towards any member of Congress or Mr. Biden,” Gosar said. “The video shows the fight that takes place next week on the floor of the House and symbolizes the battle for America’s soul as Congress grabs the massive $ 4 trillion spending bill. Mr. Biden’s dollars which includes amnesty for millions of illegal aliens already in our country and was not intended to represent any harm or violence against anyone depicted in the anime. “
The three-page censorship resolution cites the attack on the Capitol on January 6 as evidence that rhetoric like Gosar’s can lead to real threats and argues that women lawmakers are more likely to receive threats and violence only men. The House Rules Committee on Wednesday, meanwhile, passed an amendment to the resolution that will remove Gosar from the House Oversight and Reform Committee and the House Natural Resources Committee.
A House GOP contributor told Fox News that while Gosar doesn’t have the best reputation at the conference, most members just can’t go along with the idea of ââthrowing him off committees.
“He’s not your traditional Republican, a lot of people think he’s insane,” the aide said. âHe’s the type of Republican who is more of a handicap to the conference than an assetâ¦ There isn’t a lot of seriousness in his job.
âWe can’t just kick people out of committeesâ¦ it’s a slippery slope,â the GOP aide also said. “No one is defending – most of the conference is not defending what he did.”
Meanwhile, a former Gosar collaborator defended Gosar as “a smart person” and “a good person” who “just made bad decisions”.
Gosar is “not a fool,” the former aide told Fox News. “But he represents an extreme right-wing neighborhood” and “made the strategic decision to try to reproduce the bombastic style of Donald Trump” because that is “what the people want.”
“But trying to reproduce Donald Trump is going to get you in trouble,” the former aide added.
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“The video was certainly provocative and in my opinion inappropriate,” Representative Tom Cole, R-Okla., Told the House Wednesday as he led the GOP’s debate against the resolution.
But, Cole added, Gosar addressed his rhetoric at a GOP conference meeting and deleted the tweet. Moreover, the congressman said, removing Gosar from his committees and censoring him would set a poor precedent.
“Throughout the history of the House of Representatives, the majority and the minority have respected the right of each of their conferences to assign their respective members to committees,” said Cole. âThis continues to set an extremelyâ¦ dangerous precedent for future congresses. “
Chad Pergram of Fox News contributed to this report.