Watch: Minnesota House Republican leader uses two derogatory slurs in speech denying GOP bigotry

Watch: Minnesota House Republican leader uses two derogatory slurs in speech denying GOP bigotry
Image via screengrab.

Minnesota State Senate Minority Leader Mark Johnson (R-1st District) included two derogatory terms while defending the GOP against allegations of bigotry during a hearing on legislation that would allow undocumented immigrants in The Land of Ten Thousand Lakes to apply for Class-D driver's licenses and state identification cards.

The Democratic-controlled State House of Representatives passed the bill, which says that "applicants would have to pass a knowledge and behind-the-wheel test to be eligible for a license," on January 30th, according to Minnesota Public Radio.

MPR noted that "some GOP lawmakers voiced concerns about the licenses not having some designation indicating that they were non-citizen licenses. And they brought forward amendments that would more clearly indicate on a license that someone was not a U.S. citizen and was not authorized to vote."

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When the State Senate began debating the initiative, Johnson attempted to deflect criticisms of Republican opposition.

"Look, folks, we brought forth good-faith amendments throughout the night. There are holes in this bill. We're not calling groups any names. What we're saying is we need to protect Minnesotans," Johnson said in his address to the upper chamber.

But his subsequent vocabulary was poorly selected.

"It doesn't matter what your race, color, your creed – Norwegian, Polack, Somalian – you name it," said Johnson. The latter two words are considered demeaning toward people from Poland, who are Polish, as well as Somalia, whose cultural ethnicity is Somali.

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"Look, folks, we have concerns about this," Johnson continued. "And yet when we bring those concerns up on this floor, tonight we were called 'white national racists.'"

Watch below or at this link.

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