The House of Representatives voted Wednesday to censure Rep. Paul Gosar (Q-AZ)and strip him from his committee assignments by a tally of 223 to 207, with one member voting present, after outrage over an animated cartoon he posted of him killing Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Two Republicans voted for the resolution and one voted “present.”
Gosar tweeted the cartoon that started the controversy last week. It used anime-style animation to depict him killing Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., and show him attacking President Biden. It was made by his congressional staff.
“People look up to us. They take our lead. So, when a member posts a video of himself killing a colleague, that’s obviously going to have an impact on the way people approach their politics. So, we cannot dismiss Rep. Gosar’s violent fantasies as a joke,” Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon, D-Pa., said in the House debate on the matter. “In this decade, in this America, someone’s going to take him seriously.”
— Andrew Wortman 🏳️🌈 (@AmoneyResists) November 17, 2021
“Is there a high school or a workplace in America that would do nothing,” in this kind of situation, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) asked during the floor debate on the resolution to censure Gosar. Rep. Ocasio-Cortez also spoke to the violence perpetrated against her in the video during her time on the floor.
AOC: "What I believe is unprecedented is for a member of House leadership of either party to be unable to condemn incitement of violence against a member of this body … what is so hard about saying that this is wrong?" pic.twitter.com/99Gavn8a34
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) November 17, 2021
The three-page censure resolution cites the attack on the Capitol on January 6th as evidence that rhetoric like Gosar’s can lead to real threats and argues that woman legislators are more likely to receive threats and violence than men. The House Rules Committee on Wednesday, meanwhile, adopted an amendment to the resolution that will remove Gosar from the House Oversight and Reform Committee and the House Natural Resources Committee.
BREAKING: The House votes 223 – 207 to censure Paul Gosar and remove him from his committee for his violent video depicting him murdering AOC
— Mueller, She Wrote (@MuellerSheWrote) November 17, 2021
The censure of Gosar marks the 24th time in House history the chamber censured one of its members. It is the first time the House has censured a member since 2010 when it censured Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-N.Y., for ethics violations relating to campaign fundraising. Before that, two members were censured for sexual misconduct with a House page in 1983.