Rep. Paul Gosar is censured by House for violent anime video The mainly party line vote of 223-207 came after GOP Rep. Gosar posted a video on social media with an animated scene of him murdering Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Rep. Gosar is censured over an anime video depicting him killing AOC

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NOEL KING, HOST:

The House of Representatives will vote today to censure Republican Congressman Paul Gosar of Arizona. He posted an anime-style video on social media that depicted him murdering a Democratic colleague and attacking President Biden. Here's NPR's Deirdre Walsh.

DEIRDRE WALSH, BYLINE: In the anime-style video that Gosar posted on Twitter last week, a character with his image wields a sword to kill a character with the image of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The Democratic congresswoman says the video is part of a pattern that normalizes violence. She says the House must respond.

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ALEXANDRIA OCASIO-CORTEZ: I believe this is part of a concerted strategy. And I think it's very important for us to draw a very strict line and strong line of material consequence.

WALSH: The No. 2 House Democrat told reporters the video could qualify as a criminal offense since making threats against federal officials is illegal.

Gosar told his GOP colleagues his staff created the video and he had not seen it before it was posted, and he took it down. Talking to a conservative outlet hours later, he defended the video as an outreach effort about the Democrats' agenda.

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PAUL GOSAR: It's an anime. We were trying to reach out to the newer generation that likes these cartoons fabricated in Japanese likeness to actually tell them what's harmful in this bill.

WALSH: He also said he didn't apologize.

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GOSAR: I just said this video had nothing to do with harming anybody.

WALSH: Asked by reporters, the top House Republican, Kevin McCarthy, said the video was out of line.

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KEVIN MCCARTHY: Cannot accept any action of a - showing of a violence to another member or anything...

WALSH: This is the second time a House Republican faces penalties for over-the-line political rhetoric. In February, the House stripped Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene of her committee assignments for a string of threatening statements she made about Democrats. Republican leaders warned then that calling out lawmakers for controversial statements sets a bad precedent.

Ocasio-Cortez says if Republicans oppose this resolution, it will send the wrong message.

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OCASIO-CORTEZ: I think it says that they believe that this behavior is acceptable towards women in workplaces across the country.

WALSH: If the House approves the resolution, Gosar will have to stand in the well of the chamber and listen to the rebuke as it is read aloud. He'll also no longer serve on the Natural Resources Committee or Oversight Panel, where Ocasio-Cortez is a member.

Deirdre Walsh, NPR News, the Capitol.

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