GOP Lawmaker Misappropriates POC: ‘I’m A Person Of Color. I’m White. I’m An Anglo Saxon’

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Written by Dana Sanchez
Person Of Color
U.S. Rep. Mike Kelly, center, talks with a reporter at his polling place after voting on Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018 in Butler, Pa. Kelly faces democratic challenger Ron DiNicola in the newly redrawn 16th district in Pennsylvania. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

When Donald Trump told four nonwhite Democratic congresswomen to “go back” and “help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came”, some GOP lawmakers defended his racist comments. Others ducked and dived for elevators to avoid reporters, Vice reported.

Trump accused “The Squad” — freshman congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley — of hating
“our country” and claimed that they’re “pro-terrorist”. The tweeter-in-chief accused the representatives of being anti-Semitic to justify his remarks and shrugged it off as no big deal.

But GOP lawmakers were all over it when Pelosi described the “president’s racist tweets” on the House floor, forcing a vote to get her words removed from the Congressional Record. The House voted late Tuesday to formally admonish Trump, approving a resolution condemning Trump’s weekend tweets as “racist.”

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Republican Rep. Mike Kelly (Pa.) weighed in on criticism of Trump’s tweets targeting the four congresswomen, saying that he — Kelly — is a person of color because he is white.

“You know, they talk about people of color. I’m a person of color. I’m white. I’m an Anglo Saxon. People say things all the time, but I don’t get offended,” Pennsylvania GOP Rep. Mike Kelly told Vice News. “‘With a name like Mike Kelly you can’t be from any place else but Ireland.’”

The term “person of color” is used in the U.S. to refer to anyone who is not white or of European descent. Kelly told The Hill that the comment was taken out of context.

“The reporter’s tweet mischaracterized our conversation and my broader point: We’re all created equal. It’s time to stop fixating on our differences and focus on what unites us,” he said.

Kelly also said he had “thicker skin” than other people and doesn’t get offended by things as easily.

Twitter users had a lot to say about Rep. Kelly misappropriating the term “person of color”. Like this: “Umm, I think ‘white’ is actually the absence of color. So, that makes you nothing!” And this: “You’re confused by your white privilege.” And this: “Actually, you’re pink. Y’all couldn’t even get that right.”

Rep. Omar is the only one of the four lawmakers who was born outisde the U.S. She became a citizen in 2000 after escaping violence in Somalia.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell insisted “the president’s not a racist,” Vice reported.

Four Republicans and the recently Independent Rep. Justin Amash (Mich.) joined Democrats in condemning Trump’s tweets as racist. These include swing-district Reps. Will Hurd of Texas, Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania, Fred Upton of Michigan and retiring Rep. Susan Brooks.

Many GOP lawmakers said the tweets were not about race, instead blaming the progressive congresswomen, The Hill reported.