House Democrats late Wednesday announced a bid to censure Arizona Republican Rep. Paul Gosar after he posted an anime video of him killing Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and attacking President Joe Biden.
The Democrats argued that Gosar’s video was a “clear cut case for censure” because of the violence included. Gosar first posted the video Sunday then quietly deleted it Tuesday night after defending it.
“For a Member of Congress to post a manipulated video on his social media accounts depicting himself killing Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and attacking President Biden is a clear cut case for censure,” the 10 Democrats wrote in a joint statement. “For that Member to post such a video on his official Instagram account and use his official congressional resources in the House of Representatives to further violence against elected officials goes beyond the pale.”
The now-deleted video shows Gosar’s face edited over a character from the anime show “Attack on Titan.” Gosar’s character at one point strikes a character edited to have Ocasio-Cortez’s face in the back of the neck with a sword and later charges a character edited to have Biden’s face while wielding a sword in each hand.
Ocasio Cortez responded to the video after it was first posted, equating Gosar to a “collection of wet toothpicks.”
The Democratic lawmakers invoked the Capitol riot, writing how “the events of January 6th have shown, such vicious and vulgar messaging can and does foment actual violence.”
They also criticized House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, calling his “tacit approval” of Gosar’s actions “just as dangerous.”
Gosar defended the video Tuesday, arguing in a statement that it did not amount to actual violence and was instead a “symbolic portrayal of a fight over immigration policy.” He added that he did not endorse violence against lawmakers or the president.
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