Speed Reads

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GOP Rep. Paul Gosar becomes first sitting House member to be censured in 11 years

The House voted on Wednesday to censure Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) over an animated video he posted that depicted him killing Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.). All Democrats and two Republicans voted in favor of the censure, and Gosar was stripped of his two committee assignments, reports BuzzFeed News.

This marked "the first time a sitting House member has been censured in more than 10 years," reports CNN's Jim Acosta. The resolution stated that depictions of violence can lead to real harm being done to people. Gosar defended himself by saying "it was not my purpose to make anyone upset," and argued the cartoon was simply making a statement about immigration policy. "There is no threat in the cartoon other than the threat immigration poses to our country," he said on the House floor ahead of the vote. He also compared himself to Alexander Hamilton, who faced a failed censure vote as treasury secretary.

Ocasio-Cortez, meanwhile, said: "This is not about me ... This is not about Rep. Gosar, but this is about what we are willing to accept."

Some of the Republicans who voted against the censure argued either that the video didn't cross the line, or that it set a bad precedent.

The last censure of a sitting House member was in 2010, when former Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) was censured for failing to pay taxes. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) was stripped of her committee assignments earlier this year, but not censured. Gosar will no longer sit on the House's Natural Resources and Oversight and Reform committees. Read more at BuzzFeed News.