US-NEWS-HOUSE-GOSAR-GET

U.S. Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., speaks during a news conference outside the U.S. Department of Justice on July 27, 2021, in Washington, D.C. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images/TNS)

WASHINGTON — The House voted Wednesday to censure Republican Rep. Paul Gosar for posting an animated video that depicted him killing Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez with a sword, an extraordinary rebuke that highlighted the political strains testing Washington and the country.

Gosar represents Mohave County in Arizona’s Fourth Congressional District.

Calling the video a clear threat to a lawmaker’s life, Democrats argued Gosar’s conduct would not be tolerated in any other workplace — and shouldn’t be in Congress.

In an emailed response sent to media members Wednesday afternoon, Gosar defended the cartoon video and pushed back on criticisms that it promotes violence.

“It is done in a superhero format with good guys and bad guys. It flies through the air,” he wrote. “It moves fast. But it does not incite violence. It does not promote violence.”

He went on: “Let us not conflate real violence, supported by Democrats, with a mere cartoon that harms nothing but simply lampoons the globalists who push for open borders, amnesty and the destruction of our country, our republic,” concluded Congressman Gosar.

The vote to censure Gosar and also remove him from his House committee assignments was approved by a vote of 223-207, almost entirely along party lines, with Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois the only Republicans voting in favor.

Gosar showed no emotion as he stood in the well of the House after the vote, flanked by roughly a dozen Republicans as Speaker Nancy Pelosi read the censure resolution and announced his committee penalty.

He shook hands, hugged and patted other members of the GOP conference on the back before leaving the chamber.

Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy called the vote an “abuse of power” by Democrats to distract from national problems. He said of the censure, a “new standard will continue to be applied in the future,” a signal of potential ramifications for Democratic members should Republicans retake a majority.

But Democrats said there was nothing political about it.

“These actions demand a response. We cannot have members joking about murdering each other,” said Pelosi. “This is both an endangerment of our elected officials and an insult to the institution.”

Ocasio-Cortez herself said in an impassioned speech, “When we incite violence with depictions against our colleagues, that trickles down to violence in this country. And that is where we must draw the line.”

Unrepentant during tense floor debate, Gosar rejected what he called the “mischaracterization” that the cartoon was “dangerous or threatening. It was not.”

“I do not espouse violence toward anyone. I never have. It was not my purpose to make anyone upset,” Gosar said.

He compared himself to Alexander Hamilton, the nation’s first Treasury secretary, celebrated in recent years in a Broadway musical, whose censure vote in the House was defeated: “If I must join Alexander Hamilton, the first person attempted to be censured by this House, so be it, it is done.”

The decision to censure Gosar, one of the strongest punishments the House can dole out, was just the fourth in nearly 40 years — and just the latest example of the raw tensions that have roiled Congress since the 2020 election and the violent Capitol insurrection that followed.

Democrats spoke not only of the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection, but also the violent attacks that have escalated on both parties, including the 2017 shooting of Republican lawmakers practicing for a congressional baseball game and the 2011 shooting of former Arizona Rep. Gabby Giffords as she met with constituents at an event outside a Tucson grocery store.

Republicans largely dismissed Gosar’s video as nothing more than a cartoon, a routine form of political expression and hardly the most important issue facing Congress.

Yet threats against lawmakers are higher than ever, the chief of the U.S. Capitol Police told the Associated Press in an interview earlier this year.

The censure of Gosar was born out of Democratic frustration. Over the past week, as outrage over the video grew, House GOP leaders declined to publicly rebuke Gosar, who has a lengthy history of incendiary remarks. Instead, they largely ignored his actions and urged their members to vote against the resolution censuring him.

Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida said, “I would just suggest we have better things to do on the floor of the House of Representatives than be the hall monitors for Twitter.”

The resolution will remove Gosar from two committees: Natural Resources and the Oversight and Reform panel, on which Ocasio-Cortez also serves, limiting his ability to shape legislation and deliver for constituents. It states that depictions of violence can foment actual violence and jeopardize the safety of elected officials, citing the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol as an example.

Gosar is the 24th House member to be censured. Though it carries no practical effect, except to provide a historic footnote that marks a lawmaker’s career, it is the strongest punishment the House can issue short of expulsion, which requires a two-thirds vote.

Democratic Rep. Charles Rangel, the former chairman of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee, was the last to receive the rebuke in 2010 for financial misconduct.

It would also be second time this year the House has initiated the removal of a GOP lawmaker from an assigned committee, the first being Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia.

Gosar, a six-term congressman, posted the video over a week ago with a note saying, “Any anime fans out there?” The roughly 90-second video was an altered version of a Japanese anime clip, interspersed with shots of Border Patrol officers and migrants at the southern U.S. border.

During one roughly 10-second section, animated characters whose faces had been replaced with Gosar, Greene and Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., were shown fighting other animated characters. Gosar’s character is seen striking another one made to look like Ocasio-Cortez in the neck with a sword. The video also shows him attacking President Joe Biden.

Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., whose receipt of repeated death threats has required her to spend thousands on security, said Gosar has not apologized to her. She singled out McCarthy for not condemning Gosar.

“What is so hard about saying this is wrong?” Ocasio-Cortez said. “This is not about me. This is not about Representative Gosar. But this is about what we are willing to accept.”

This is not the first brush with controversy for Gosar, who was first elected in 2010’s tea party wave. He has been repeatedly criticized by his own siblings, six of whom appeared in campaign ads supporting his Democratic opponent in 2018.

Earlier this year Gosar looked to form an America First Caucus with other hardline Republican House members that aimed to promote “Anglo-Saxon political traditions” while warning that mass immigration was putting the “unique identity” of the U.S. at risk. He’s made appearances at fringe right-wing events, including a gathering in Florida last February hosted by Nick Fuentes, an internet personality who has promoted white supremacist beliefs.

He has also portrayed a woman shot by Capitol police during the attack on the Capitol as a martyr, claiming she was “executed.” And he falsely suggested that a 2017 white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, was instigated by “the left” and backed by billionaire George Soros, a major funder of liberal causes who has become the focus of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories.

___

Associated Press writers Alan Fram and Farnoush Amiri contributed to this report.

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(35) comments

1502

People like this is why Americans are divided! China getting stronger everyday and we get weaker. Our greatest generation would be saddened by Americans. America is sinking quickly and the Asian nations get stronger. Do you really think we can compete with Them. It is too late. Keep fighting with each other and China wii ow us and there is nothing you can do.

simon1dog

OC is a terrorist. The goons that voted her in are terrorists as well. Thank you Paul Gosar for being a true American patriot.

BigBob

simple - No matter how many times you post this s**t it will never be true. Gosar is a racist, anti-Semitic nut-case who is a danger to members of Congress and is despised by his own family. And AOC is a true American patriot calling out the Republiscum/Fascist losers whenever they raise their ugly heads.

BigBob

The twice-impeached, lying, con-man proved his ignorance after he endorsed the utterly useless Paul Gosar after the House censured the racist POS for posting a cartoon video that depicted a character with his face killing one with New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's. The fool, in a statement, hailed Gosar as “a loyal supporter of our America First agenda" and “highly respected in Arizona," ( a bald-faced lie) and said he "has my Complete and Total Endorsement!” The statement made no mention of the House's rare rebuke — just the fourth in nearly 40 years — which also stripped Gosar of his committee assignments.

simon1dog

Paul Gosar is an American hero much like Paul Revere.

BigBob

simple - No matter ow many times you post this s**t it will never be true. Gosar is a racist, anti-Semitic nut-case who is a danger to members of Congress and is despised by his own family.

BigBob

People who should know –

Tim Gosar, brother of GOP Rep. Paul Gosar said Congress didn’t go far enough on Wednesday with its censure of the lawmaker for sharing a violent anime video targeting Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), arguing that his brother should be expelled from the legislative body and that criminal charges should be brought against his brother, “I believe he’s dangerous, unhinged and is reckless,” Tim Gosar told MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace. “And is somebody that, as I’ve said before, needs to not only be censured, but he needs to be expelled.”

The Arizona lawmaker’s sister, Jennifer Gosar, also spoke out on Wednesday, telling MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell: “To be honest with you, it is about time.” She also called for Gosar to be expelled from Congress.

simon1dog

Paul Gosar is an American hero much like Paul Revere.

BigBob

simple - No matter ow many times you post this s**t it will never be true. Gosar is a racist, anti-Semitic nut-case who is a danger to members of Congress and is despised by his own family.

Third Eye

Paul Revere was a Federalist.

Third Eye

Paul Revere was a Federalist.

Yup

AOC is a worthless POS liberal loon !

BigBob

yup - Gosar is a worthless POS Republiscum/Fascist and a danger to every American.

shutthefrontdoor

Gosar and Greene, two censured and out of the Klown Kar, two to go, Matt "Jailbait" Gaetz and "Loony" Louis "COVID" Gohmert Jr!

Third Eye

Don't forget the pedo groomer, Boebert.

1502

The world is laughing at America as it tears itself apart. China will be the world power with its manufacturing machine and its focus on educating its population to the highest levels of science and engineering…

Too old for this

[offtopic]

1947

Keep up the good work Mr. Gosar. AOC needs to hit the bricks! She is a racist loser!

BigBob

47 (IQ!) - Ahh, gee, dummy! You don't get it do you? He is now incapable of doing any of the work the ignorant Republicans voted him to do. He's useless, as always.

1947

He still has a vote and that is what counts! Dummy!

simon1dog

1947 - [thumbup]

Very Stable Genius 2020

What did Gosar do right after he was censured? He retweeted the same violent video. At best this guy is mentally ill and at worst he is a racist, anti-Semitic insurrectionist. Either way he has no business representing CD4.

#remove46

I know lets just be inhumane to a man that may be going thru some sort of breakdown. I find it sad the things his family says in public about him. very sad. They never learned you don't air your family laundry. He is not a POS, he's a human. Guess my answer to Big Bob is , "it takes one to know one". Big Bob is Jesus Christ, judge and jury, and the DA that sits at the throne of human judgement. I'm ok with them censoring him, but at what point in time did we come to a place where we toss people aside like the Monday morning garbage?? Just sayin.

BigBob

46 (IQ!) - The POS is not undergoing "some sort of breakdown." He's a disgusting racist pure and simple and a danger to all mankind. And no, fool, I am not "Jesus Christ, judge and jury...", those would be the people in the House of Representatives who "censured" (not censored, stupid) nailed him. Now they need to expel him. Overall he is just another of many Republican's who is a total embarrassment to our state.

#remove46

Wow, and you know this how??? How are you so personally informed about all this. So if you do, tell, intellegent sheep, give me the data on him being a "racist(the everyday leftie buzz word) and a POS?? And there you go again, you make typing errors, and no one calls you out, but you just cannot control yourself, you defaming, arrogant, egotistical SOB!

deaton

“And no, fool, I am not "Jesus Christ, judge and jury..." You sure act like you are BigBob, ranting and raving at just about everything, like some incoherent lunatic, from the safety of what ever hole you live in, there in “parts unknown”! If your hole in the ground is somewhere other then AZ District 4 you can’t even vote against the Doctor. The voters in Mohave County and LHC, the City and County you were “evicted” out of will take care of electing the candidate to represent us. Of course if you were to become one of those “cemetery” voters, I’m sure one the ballot harvester’s would drop by your “real hole in the ground” to pick up your illegal, fraudulent ballot? How pleasant it is to contemplate that scenario! [thumbup][tongue][wink][beam] Deaton

Too old for this

[thumbup][thumbup]

Third Eye

Interesting 46 how you defend gosar's possible mental issues but you never correct anyone when they comment about Biden and their belief that he is a pedo or that he has dementia.

deaton

Maybe T-Eye, it’s the probability the Dim-Joe is a “pedo” and has “dementia” which is becoming more apparent with each day that passes? [thumbup][tongue][whistling][wink] Deaton

#remove46

I'm not defending Gosar, And you're not reading the remark. My angst is with Big Bob who continually calls people morons, simpletons, stupid, liars, and on and on, when he doesn't even know those people. Turns out Gosar has some health issues, doesn't make what he did right, and doesn't make it wrong, but there is ALWAYS more to the story. BigBob lives in a bubble. reading the daily leftie news papers, cutting and pasting what meets his need, and he is Trump deranged, when he is no longer the president. Finds is easy to call people POS's, and forgets...he is human and makes as many mistakes as anyone, but feels the arrogance to be rude, and condesending. My hope is that he will look within himself, to see his faults and stop the ridiculous name calling, and blanket assumptions. As for Biden, I won't make excuses for Biden, he's the president that was elected with NO physical or mental evaluation. His family should be embarrassed for allowing him to run, but saying all that, I feel bad for him. Coming from a family with Alzheimer's history, the man is not prepared to run this country, and it shows!

deaton

T-Eye are you snoozing again[sleeping]?

Corn pop speech:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NQDnWBt4LlE

The “Hillary” grope and child and adult hair sniffing, on CNN of all places:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xSSMG0MaEnQ

Five minutes of Dim-Joe being DIM-Joe!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fNQAbF33gFM

Just copy the link and paste into “YouTube” search, good for a laugh! [thumbup][wink]

Deaton

Third Eye

46, how about you follow your own advice.

#remove46

Advice? Really? Just like everyone else spewing their "advice", I'll voice mine.

Third Eye

46 I guess the air from your ivory tower is clouding your judgement.

BigBob

And now Gosar is totally useless - not that he wasn't before this. Time to dump the racist POS!

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