The vice chairman of the House Democratic Caucus on Wednesday blasted a Kansas state representative for comparing illegal immigrants to “feral hogs” and advocating their killing, saying such rhetoric is dangerous.
Rep. Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraHispanics are split in DNC race Becerra launches 2018 bid for full term as California AG The green movement must continue in Trump era MORE (D-Calif.) also slammed Republicans for not immediately denouncing the comments by GOP state Rep. Virgil Peck, saying their silence is “deafening.”
Peck later said he had been joking.
“Advocating the killing or slaughter of any individual or group is no laughing matter, and I’m sure the good people of southeast Kansas would agree,” said Becerra in a statement. “We know all too well where that kind of unacceptable talk can lead. The memory of the Tucson, Arizona shooting is still fresh in our minds.”
The January shooting killed six and wounded 13 others, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.)
Becerra called on the GOP to oppose Peck’s comments and work with Democrats to try to address the problem of illegal immigration.
“The American people want us to work together to fix our broken immigration system,” he said. “And they want leaders who offer solutions, not fear, hatred and violence. Where are the voices of the leaders of the Republican party denouncing State Representative Peck’s vicious comments? Their silence is deafening.”
The executive director of the Kansas Republican Party did not immediately return a request for comment from The Hill.