A Nebraska Democratic official was fired Thursday after he was apparently recorded saying he wished Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) was dead, that he was glad he was shot, and called him a “motherfucker.”
The Omaha World-Herald reported that Phil Montag, the co-chair of the Nebraska Democratic Party’s technology committee, was removed from his position by Chair Jane Kleeb after Kleeb was given a recording of Montag’s comments posted to a black advocacy website.
Talk Real Solutions posted the comments in which Montag appears to call Scalise, the House majority whip, a “motherfucker” reportedly during a conversation at a private home in Omaha with Nebraska Democratic Party Black Caucus Chair Chelsey Gentry-Tipton and her friend.
Scalise was shot last week by a Bernie Sanders supporter during a Republican baseball practice. He remains in hospital in serious condition. But Scalise’s plight gets little sympathy from Montag.
“That motherfucker, the one that was shot…. this motherfucker, like his whole job is like to get people, to convince Republicans to fucking kick people off fucking health care,” he said in a heated discussion.
“I hate this motherfucker. I’m glad he got shot, I’m glad he got shot. I’m not going to fucking say that in public,” he said before adding: “I wish he was fucking dead.”
He is then told that the conversation was being recorded.
Kleeb called Montag’s comments “disgusting.”
“As soon as I heard it, I sent it to the (party) officers and then sent an email to Phil Montag informing him I am removing him from his appointed position as Co-Chair of the Technology Committee,” she told the World-Herald. “Wishing a Member of Congress or any individual dead is disgusting and has no place in our party.”
Kleeb also said she had reported the remarks to the police as she viewed them as a possible death threat. Montag, however, denied the remarks were a death threat and implied his remarks were taken out of context.
“Like every decent American I am saddened and horrified by the shooting of Congressman Scalise,” Montag told the World-Herald. “I do not and did not wish for his death. I am hopeful that the entirety of the original, unedited recording will emerge so we can get to the truth of the matter.”
The controversy comes after Gentry-Tipton, the Black Caucus chairwoman also heard in the recording, was under pressure to resign last week after writing on Facebook in the wake of the shooting: “Watching the congressman crying on live tv abt the trauma they experienced. Y is this so funny tho?”
The World-Herald reported that Kleeb had called on her to resign, but could not force her out as Gentry-Tipton was in an elected position.
“Anyone who makes insensitive comments about gun violence is wrong. For me that’s the end of the story,” Kleeb said.
When Talk Real Solutions posted Montag’s remarks, they asked: “Will white privilege win, or will the Democrats right this listing ship and stay out of Black people’s affairs?”