Kevin McCarthy moves to censure Maxine Waters after Pelosi defends, says no need for Waters to apologize

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., announced Monday that he will introduce a resolution to censure Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., for her “dangerous comments” in Brooklyn Park, Minn., over the weekend.

The announcement coming after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., defended Waters’ call for the anti-police mob in the streets to “get more confrontational” if the verdict in former Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin’s trial is not satisfactory. Taking it further, Pelosi said there was no need for Waters to apologize for what was widely seen as inciting violence.

“We’ve got to stay on the street, and we’ve got to get more active, we’ve got to get more confrontational,” Waters said Saturday night. “We’ve got to make sure that they know that we mean business.”

Less than 24 hours after Waters’ remarks, two National Guard soldiers were injured in nearby Minneapolis after being fired on in a drive-by shooting

“This weekend in Minnesota, Maxine Waters broke the law by violating curfew, and then incited violence,” McCarthy said in a statement. “Increased unrest has already led to violence against law enforcement and her comments intentionally poured fuel on the fire.”

“We’ve heard this type of violent rhetoric from Waters before, and the United States Congress must clearly and without reservation reprimand this behavior before more people get hurt,” the GOP leader continued. “But Speaker Pelosi is ignoring Waters’ behavior. That’s why I am introducing a resolution to censure Rep. Waters for these dangerous comments, and I hope that all my colleagues – both Republican and Democrat – will stand up for peace on America’s streets.”

McCarthy took to Twitter Sunday night to press Pelosi to act, warning that he’ll take action if she doesn’t.

“Maxine Waters is inciting violence in Minneapolis — just as she has incited it in the past. If Speaker Pelosi doesn’t act against this dangerous rhetoric, I will bring action this week,” he tweeted.

His attempt to censure Waters is a privileged resolution, meaning that Pelosi cannot prevent a vote.

With the speaker holding a razor thin majority, it would only take three Democrats to support the effort for Waters to be formally censured — assuming all Republicans vote for it. Still a longshot, but if  passed by the House, Waters could be stripped of the role as Financial Services chair.

Waters, the House Financial Services Committee chairwoman, has a long history of encouraging lawless behavior, dating as far back as the 1992 Los Angeles riots.

In 2018, the now-82-year-old lawmaker called for those on the left to harass officials in then-President Donald Trump’s administration wherever they may encounter them.

“Let’s make sure we show up wherever we have to show up,” the Democrat lawmaker said. “And if you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd. And you push back on them. And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.”

This call to action resulted in numerous public confrontations with Trump officials.

In 2019, Waters was essentially rewarded by Pelosi with the powerful committee chair role.

“Maxine talked about confrontation in the manner of the Civil Rights movement,” the speaker said Monday of Waters urging the mob to get more confrontational. “I myself think we should take our lead from the George Floyd family. They’ve handled this with great dignity and no ambiguity or lack of misinterpretation by either side.”

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Tom Tillison

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