On Tuesday, Politico reported that Rep. Cedric Richmond, D-La., chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, threatened violence after a painting that depicts police officers as pigs was removed for the second time in a week.
“We may just have to kick somebody’s ass and stop them,” he threatened.
According to Politico:
The comment, by Richmond came after Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) yanked the painting from the Capitol hallway for the second time in a week and returned it to the office of Rep. Lacy Clay, whose district includes Ferguson. The canvas had only just been rehung Tuesday morning after being removed last week by California Republican Rep. Duncan Hunter.
On Tuesday, CBC members held a ceremony to re-hang it, snapping pictures of the event and daring Republicans to take it down again — and Lamborn obliged.
“Just yesterday, we honored Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. I could not, in good conscience, continue to walk by a painting that so flagrantly disrespected the brave police officers that protect us here in the Capitol and in our communities across the country,” said Lamborn in a statement. “I decided to continue the protest started by my colleague Congressman Hunter and I hope that permanent action is taken to remove this brazen attack on the brave men and women who make up the thin blue line.”
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Republicans joined in a protest to remove the painting, Politico said.
“Today I joined Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (Calif.) in taking down this offensive and disrespectful artwork hanging in [the] tunnel of [the] Capitol,” tweeted Rep. Brian Babin, R-Texas.
Clay said he intends to meet with House Speaker Paul Ryan, claiming that repeated removals reflect a “lack of civility and decorum on the part of members of the majority party of this House,” failing to understand that the picture reflects a lack of civility and decorum on the part of liberal Democrats.
“Lamborn came over, brought the picture to me, and I made sure he left swiftly from my office,” Clay said, according to Politico. “I’m in the middle of meetings in my office and he brings the picture. It’s a lack of decorum and respect for people’s constituents and people’s First Amendment rights. This kid has a right to express on canvas what he feels. How dare you try to stifle that, try to censor that. That’s wrong.”
Clay even tried to file a complaint against Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., when he took the picture down. The U.S. Capitol Police, however, thanked Hunter for taking the picture down and refused to take Clay’s complaint.
Hunter, Politico added, tweeted a picture of himself shaking hands with the Missouri Democrat, writing: “Even though we disagree we’re still friends.”
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