Nebraska Democratic Party Chair Jane Kleeb removed a party official from his post on Thursday after he was recorded saying that he wished House Majority Whip Steve Scalise had died in last week’s shooting, which left him critically injured.
“His whole job is to get people, convince Republicans to f–king kick people off f–ing healthcare,” Phil Montag, a volunteer co-chairman of the Democratic party’s technology committee, was heard saying on the audio recording. “I hate this motherf–er. I’m glad he got shot.” Montag added, “I wish he was f–ing dead.”
Kleeb later confirmed the voice on the recording was Montag’s and fired him on Thursday morning after The World-Herald sent her a link to the recording on a black advocacy website.
She later reported the recording to police because she viewed his remarks as a possible death threat.
“We obviously condemn any kind of violence, whether it’s comments on Facebook or comments in a meeting,” Kleeb told Nebraska’s Fox 42 KPTM. “Our country is better than the political rhetoric that is out there from both the far right and the far left.”
Montag also called Scalise obscene names while he was recorded during a 30-minute private meeting with the party’s Black Caucus chairwoman, Chelsey Gentry-Tipton, who is also under fire for making inappropriate remarks about the shooting.
The Washington Times reports that a friend of Gentry-Tipton, Destin Madison, told Montag he had been recorded and planned to go public with it.
After the audio was publicly released, Montag issued an apology Thursday, claiming he was “horrified” by the shooting of Scalise and argued the recording was edited to misrepresent his words, reports The Omaha World-Herald.
“Like every decent American I am saddened and horrified by the shooting of Congressman Scalise,” Montag said in the statement. “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.”
Scalise and three other people were shot on June 14 after a gunman opened fire on a group of Republican lawmakers, lobbyists, and congressional staffers at an Alexandria, Virginia baseball field as they practiced for a congressional charity baseball game.
The congressman has since undergone multiple surgeries to repair extensive damage to his internal organs and internal bleeding caused by the gunshot wound.
Warning: The video below contains strong language.
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