Kinzinger Says GOPers Who Join Nativist Caucus Should Be Stripped Of Committees

UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 30: Reps. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., left, and Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., attend a news conference on the China Task Force report in the Capitol’s Rayburn Room on Wednesday, September 30, 2020. The report outlines bipartisan action to combat threats from China. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 30: Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)
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April 17, 2021 10:25 a.m.

Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) suggested on Friday that members of Congress who join a newly-formed, far-right caucus that has espoused nativist and white supremacist ideas should be stripped of their committees.

“I believe anyone that joins this caucus should have their committees stripped, and the Republican conference should expel them from conference participation,” Kinzinger tweeted.

The comments come after a document that appeared to provide an overview of the policy posture of the new “America First Caucus” tied to Reps. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) and Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) was reported on Friday.

The caucus document, which urges for a pause in immigration, invokes language of nativism and white supremacy, suggesting that the United States is “strengthened by a common respect for uniquely Anglo-Saxon political traditions.”

According to the document, the group has pledged “to follow in President Trump’s footsteps.”

“History has shown that societal trust and political unity are threatened when foreign citizens are imported en-masse into a country, particularly without institutional support for assimilation and an expansive welfare state to bail them out should they fail to contribute positively to the country,” the document says.

The platform further calls for infrastructure that “reflects the architectural, engineering and aesthetic value that befits the progeny of European architecture.”

The call from Kinzinger to strip committees from those aligning themselves with the caucus could serve to dial up the heat on House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) who said on Friday that the Republican Party is not the party of “nativist dog whistles” without mentioning the caucus directly.

“America is built on the idea that we are all created equal and success is earned through honest, hard work. It isn’t built on identity, race, or religion,” McCarthy tweeted on Friday afternoon.

“The Republican Party is the party of Lincoln & the party of more opportunity for all Americans — not nativist dog whistles,” he added.

Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY), the House GOP conference chair, also appeared to reject nativist notions in a tweet Friday.

“Racism, nativism, and anti-Semitism are evil. History teaches we all have an obligation to confront & reject such malicious hate,” Cheney wrote.

In February, Cheney urged fellow Republican lawmakers to “make clear that we aren’t the party of white supremacy,” in the wake of the Jan. 6 Capitol attack which was littered with Confederate symbols and left five people dead. 

In response to the news that Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) — who is currently under federal investigation and is suspected of making payments to women for sex using cash apps — was “proud” to join the group, Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) asked: “I wonder if their caucus has secret signals and means of communications, like secret Aryan Venmo handles?”

A spokesman for Greene, Nick Dyer, responded to the Punchbowl report in a statement to NBC News: “Capitol Hill is full of dirty backstabbing swamp creatures willing to leak gossip,” he said, adding that the caucus’ platform would be announced to the public soon.

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