NEW ORLEANS, La. (WDSU) — A heated exchange was had between Rep. Cedric Richmond and Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz Wednesday during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act.
Richmond opened up his statement saying he was “angry as hell.”
“By the time that I am finished I want to be clear that we are not good friends,” Richmond said as he addressed the committee.
Richmond pleaded with his colleagues to not make a mockery of the debate over police reform with what he called useless amendments.
“You all are white males. You never lived in my shoes and you do not know what it is like to be an African American male,” Richmond said.
He urged to the committee that if they don’t agree with the legislation to just take a vote instead of mocking the pain of the black community.
Rep. Gaetz asked Richmond directly, “Are you suggesting that you’re certain none of us have non-white children?”
A heated exchange unfolded where Richmond said he was not going to get into an argument over their children’s skin and reclaimed his time.
“I already know that there are people on the other side that have black grandchildren,” said Richmond. “It is not about the color of your kids, it is about black men being killed in the streets.”
Richmond said if one of the people killed in the street was one of Gaetz’s kids, he would be concerned, and said he was clearly more concerned Gaetz.
“Who the hell do you think you are?” Gaetz screamed at Richmond.
“If the shoe fits, a kicked dog hollers,” Richmond said.
After Richmond reclaimed his time, he responded to Gaetz, “Did that strike a nerve?”
“Hell yeah it did,” Gaetz said.
Richmond ended his address by saying that police reform is a critical emergency for people in the country, and the bill should be voted up or down.
The entire exchange can be seen on C-SPAN here.
By: WDSU Digital Team