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Maxine Waters rips GOP criticism: 'I'm not going to be bullied'

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) ripped GOP lawmakers in a Monday interview, saying they were trying to "send a message" to white supremacists with their criticism of her. 

I am nonviolent,” Waters told The Grio on Monday after House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyGOP braces for wild week with momentous vote GOP divided over expected Cheney ouster McCarthy says he supports Stefanik for House GOP conference chair MORE (R-Calif.) accused her of condoning political violence by stating supporters of racial justice and Black Lives Matter should be "more confrontational."  

“Republicans will jump on any word, any line and try to make it fit their message and their cause for denouncing us and denying us, basically calling us violent ... any time they see an opportunity to seize on a word, so they do it and they send a message to all of the white supremacists, the KKK, the Oath Keepers, the [Proud] Boys and all of that, how this is a time for [Republicans] to raise money on [Democrats'] backs," Waters said. 

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Waters told The Grio she is "not worried that they’re going to continue to distort what I say." 

"This is who they are and this is how they act," she said. "And I’m not going to be bullied by them.”

“This is a time for [Republicans] to keep telling our constituents that [Democrats] are the enemy and they do that time and time again,” Waters said. “But that does not deter me from speaking truth to power. I am not intimidated. I am not afraid, and I do what needs to be done.”

While in Minnesota over the weekend, Waters was asked by reporters about the trial of Derek Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer facing murder charges in the killing of George Floyd last May. A verdict in the case is expected in the coming days. 

"We've got to get more confrontational," Waters told reporters according to Fox News. "We've got to make sure that they know that we mean business." 

If Chauvin is found not guilty, Waters said she and others are "going to fight with all of the people who stand for justice," adding, "We’ve got to get justice in this country, and we cannot allow these killings to continue." 

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McCarthy said the remarks constituted an endorsement of political violence. 

"Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden address to Congress will dominate busy week Maxine Waters: Judge in Chauvin trial who criticized her was 'angry' GOP, Democrats grapple with post-Chauvin trial world MORE is inciting violence in Minneapolis — just as she has incited it in the past," McCarthy said in a tweet. "If Speaker Pelosi doesn’t act against this dangerous rhetoric, I will bring action this week." 

McCarthy spoke after GOP Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (Ga.) on Sunday announced plans to introduce a resolution to expel Waters from Congress for the remarks. 

Greene has come under criticism repeatedly in her short tenure in Congress, most recently after a document to form an America First Caucus circulated. The document in a section on immigration described the United States as having been based on "uniquely Anglo-Saxon political traditions." 

Greene sought to distance herself from the document on Saturday, saying it was a staff-level draft proposal from an outside group, according to The Washington Post.