Democrats Want to Censure Paul Gosar for Anime Clip in Which He Kills AOC

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Adding to his list of controversies this year — which include his appearance at a white-nationalist conference and a reported promise of a “blanket pardon” for those planning actions on January 6 — Arizona representative Paul Gosar tweeted out a video on Sunday showing an anime version of himself attacking President Joe Biden and killing New York Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Now, Democrats intend to discipline the Republican to the limited extent that they can, with Democratic Women’s Caucus co-chair Jackie Speier leading an effort to formally censure Gosar.

In a statement announcing the resolution to be introduced on Friday, the members wrote that for Gosar “to post such a video on his official Instagram account and use his official congressional resources in the House of Representatives to further violence against elected officials goes beyond the pale,” adding that the insurrection showed how “such vicious and vulgar messaging can and does foment actual violence.”

The video, posted to Gosar’s personal and political Twitter accounts with the line “Any anime fans out there?,” depicts his face superimposed on a protagonist from Attack on Titan — which some on the far right have embraced as an allegory for replacement theory. At one point in the video, which features images of migrants with splattered blood on the camera, Gosar kills a giant with the face of Ocasio-Cortez.

The day after the video appeared, Ocasio-Cortez condemned Gosar for posting it, describing him on Twitter as “a creepy member I work with who fundraises for Neo-Nazi groups [who] shared a fantasy video of him killing me.” She also condemned House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy for refusing to respond, writing that “institutions don’t protect” women of color. And she noted that this was not the first time far-right members of the Republican House Caucus have threatened or demeaned her:

Twitter has not taken down the video due to “public interest,” though the platform did put a click-through warning in front of the clip describing it as “hateful conduct.” Gosar remains unapologetic, saying that “the creativity of my team is off the hook.” When asked by the Washington Post about the matter, his press secretary said, “Everyone needs to relax.”

Dems Try to Censure GOP Rep for Anime in Which He Kills AOC