Rights Groups Call For Expulsion of Paul Gosar

“Censure is important but not enough,” said a leader at women’s rights group UltraViolet on Wednesday after the U.S. House of Representatives voted to censure Rep. Paul Gosar over an animated video he posted depicting the murder of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and violence against President Joe Biden.

“Anyone who shares content of themselves murdering a coworker on social media would be fired without hesitation in any other workplace,” saidBridget Todd is the communications director at UltraViolet. “There should be no difference in Congress.”

The Arizona Republican’s violent video has spurred widespead backlash and 15,000 people have signed a petition organized by UltraViolet urging Gosar’s expulsion from Congress.

The House voted to censure Congressman in a vote 216 to203. This removed him from his positions on both the Committee on Oversight and Reform and on Committee on Natural Resources.

Many members took to the House floor to express their condemnation of Gosar’s actions, including Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.).

“Rep. Gosar’s tweets depicting the murder of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and violence against President Biden are horrific. Social media platforms are often toxic places for women of color as is,” said Todd. “Rep. Gosar’s perpetuation of violence against Rep. Ocasio-Cortez on Twitter merely adds fuel to an already raging fire of promoting violence against women on social media.”

Common Cause, a rights group, is calling for Gosar to be removed from office and sent a letterEvery member of the House demanded his expulsion on Wednesday and a thorough investigation into his conduct.

The letter lambasted the Arizona congressman’s actions as “reprehensible” and warned that “dangerous and incendiary social media posts like Rep. Gosar’s can spur real-world violence.”

“You must reject the normalization of political violence and threats and recognize them as the extreme dangers to our democratic institutions and ideals,” wrote Common Cause president Karen Hobert Flynn.

After the vote, Rep. Pramila Jawapal (D.Wash.), chaired the Congressional Progressive Caucus. applauded the House decision, saying: “Today’s vote to censure Congressman Gosar and remove him from serving on committees is an essential first step towards accountability. Rep. Gosar’s unacceptable behavior cannot be met with silence as he explicitly invokes and threatens violence against a fellow member of Congress and the president of the United States.”

This post was updated with comments from Rep. Pramila Japal (D-Wash.).