News & Politics

Black Congresswomen Are Demanding an Apology from John Kelly Over His Lies About Rep. Frederica Wilson

The chief of staff has yet to admit wrongdoing.

Photo Credit: MSNBC

After Florida Rep. Frederica Wilson informed the press of President Trump's comments during a phone call to the widow of Sgt. La David Johnson, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly publicly attacked the Democratic lawmaker.

Kelly also made a stunningly false accusation that Wilson had taken credit for securing funding for an FBI building in Florida. Yet video of the event he referenced shows that Wilson did no such thing.

The women of the Congressional Black Caucus are taking Kelly to task and demanding he apologize for his demeaning comments.

“We were appalled by White House Chief of Staff John Kelly’s statements where he called Congresswoman Wilson an ‘empty barrel’ and accused her of taking credit for securing funding for a new FBI Building in Miramar, Florida that was named after two fallen FBI agents, Benjamin Grogan and Jerry Dove," the statement reads. "A video of Congresswoman Wilson’s comments on that day has been released, and it provides indisputable proof that she never made any of the statements of which General Kelly falsely accused her."

The congresswomen allege that Kelly' statements weren't just incorrect—they were lies.

“General Kelly’s comments are reprehensible. Congresswoman Wilson’s integrity and credibility should not be challenged or undermined by such blatant lies. We, the women of the Congressional Black Caucus, proudly stand with Congresswoman Wilson and demand that General Kelly apologize to her without delay and take responsibility for his reckless and false statements.” 

At press time, the following caucus members had signed the statement: Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), Maxine Waters (D-CA), Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX), Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), Barbara Lee (D-CA), Gwen Moore (D-WI), Yvette D. Clarke (D-NY), Marcia L. Fudge (D-OH), Karen Bass (D-CA), Terri Sewell (D-AL), Joyce Beatty (D-OH), Robin Kelly (D-IL), Alma Adams (D-NC), Brenda Lawrence (D-MI), Stacey Plaskett (D-VI), Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ), Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE), and Val Butler Demings (D-FL).

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Chris Sosa is the former Senior Editor of AlterNet. His work also appears in Mic, Salon, Care2, Huffington Post and other publications. Follow him on Twitter @ChrisSosa.