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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 1/8/19

Rep. Rashida Tlaib: I Won't Apologize for My Comments About Trump -- I Still Want to Impeach Him

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Newly elected Democratic Congressmember Rashida Tlaib of Michigan made headlines last week for declaring, "We're going to go in there, and we're going to impeach the motherf***er," in reference to President Donald Trump. Tlaib made the comment at a Washington, D.C., bar, days after she made history last week when she and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota became the first Muslim women sworn in to Congress. Tlaib is part of the most diverse and most female class of representatives in U.S. history. We speak with Rashida Tlaib in Detroit, Michigan.

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This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: We begin the show with renewed calls for the impeachment of President Donald Trump. On Thursday, Democratic Congressmember Brad Sherman of California reintroduced articles of impeachment in the House. Then, Thursday night, newly elected Democratic Congressmember Rashida Tlaib of Michigan made headlines for using a curse to describe the president during a celebration at a bar hours after being sworn in to office.

REP. RASHIDA TLAIB: Now, when your son looks at you and says, "Mama, look, you won. Bullies don't win." And I said, "Baby, they don't, because we're going to go in there, and we're going to impeach the [bleep]."

AMY GOODMAN: President Trump responded to Tlaib by saying her remarks were, quote, "highly disrespectful to the United States of America," and said Tlaib had "dishonored" herself and her family.

Meanwhile, newly elected Democratic Congressmember Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wrote on Twitter, "Republican hypocrisy at its finest: saying that Trump admitting to sexual assault on tape is just 'locker room talk,' but scandalizing themselves into faux-outrage when my sis says a curse word in a bar. GOP lost entitlement to policing women's behavior a long time ago," Ocasio-Cortez tweeted.

Well, Congressmember Tlaib made history last week when she and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota became the first Muslim women sworn in to Congress. Congressmember Tlaib is Palestinian-American. Omar is Somali-American. They are part of the most diverse and most female class of representatives in U.S. history.

To talk about impeachment, the government shutdown and more, we are joined by Congressmember Rashida Tlaib in Detroit, Michigan, the community she represents.

Welcome back to Democracy Now!, Congressmember Tlaib. Well, if you can start off by explaining your comments that night, Thursday, when you called the president an MFer.

REP. RASHIDA TLAIB: Well, I can tell you, you know, I am a person that every -- people that do really know me well know that I'm extremely passionate about fighting for my families and the residents back home. And I can tell you, here in my community, the only thing that I probably didn't want to happen is to distract us. We are currently in a government shutdown. I want to focus on that. I want to get us -- really start driving the message out there about the human impact that the government shutdown has.

Look, you know, I'm my authentic self, Amy. This is who I am. And people want some -- you know, they always want people that are real and human. But at the same time, I don't want us to be deterred or distracted by what's important right now, which is accountability for the president of the United States, which is to get us back open and functional as a government. There's so much work to be done. And I didn't expect this kind of, you know, attention and maybe attacks on what I said, although I still want to impeach him.

AMY GOODMAN: They have demanded that you apologize. What's your comment?

REP. RASHIDA TLAIB: Look, one of the things that I think is really important is the fact that I, you know, know that this is a teachable moment. I understand that I'm a member of Congress now. But I am also a person that is angry and upset with the conduct of my president, of a conduct of a person that -- you know, what's happening at the borders, as a person that is Muslim in America, what is being said about my faith. There's so much there. And I'm passionate, and I'm upset. But I won't apologize for being upset or angry.

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