White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said on Monday that it’s up to Republicans to decide whether to keep House Majority Whip Steve Scalise in leadership, but added that the decision will say a lot about GOP values, The Times-Picayune reports.
Earnest said at the White House Briefing, “There is no arguing that who Republicans decide to elevate into leadership says a lot about what the conference’s priorities and values are.”
Boehner and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy have both said that Scalise made a mistake to speak before members of a white supremacist group in 2002, but added that they were confident in Scalise’s integrity and supported him staying on as majority whip.
Other Republicans have supported Scalise in the midst of the scandal, including Mia Love.
The group EURO, which featured Scalise as a featured speaker at their event, was founded by the notorious former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.
The Times Picayune notes that Earnest said that the President doesn’t take a position on who the House GOP decides to put in leadership.
“There’s no arguing that who Republicans decide to elevate into a leadership position says a lot about what the conference’s priorities and values are,” Earnest said.
“Ultimately, Mr. Scalise reportedly described himself as David Duke without the baggage,” Earnest said. “So it will be up to Republicans to decide what that says about their conference.”
A House GOP leadership aide pushed back on Earnest’s comments Monday evening, according to the Huffington Post.
“The White House piling on Rep. Scalise is awfully short-sighted,” the aide said. “As House Republican whip, Scalise will play a crucial role in determining the fate of the President’s bipartisan legislative priorities — like trade — over the next two years.”
Scalise claims that he had no idea that he was speaking to a room filled with neo-nazis. Usually there are clues, like in the audience for example.
The ball is in their court. It’s pretty much too late at this point for the GOP to ostracize Scalise since Republicans have already rallied behind him. As Earnest said, it speaks volumes on their character. Also, too, that feigned GOP outreach is looking like a scam, don’t you think?
This could have been their defining moment. A moment of doing what’s right for a change.
What does it say about a party that’s seeking to dump John Boehner while defending House Majority Whip Steve Scalise?
At least Boehner hasn’t been a featured speaker at a white supremacist jerk-off convention. Still yet, the House Speaker has defended Scalise.
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