Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.) apologized late Sunday for a crude joke he made last week about Kellyanne Conway, senior adviser to President Donald Trump.
"After a discussion with people I know and trust I understand the way my remarks have been received by many,” Richmond said in a statement. “I have consistently been a champion for women and women’s issues, and because of that the last thing I would want to ever do is utter words that would hurt or demean them."
NEW: Rep. Cedric Richmond apologizes to @KellyannePolls https://t.co/8NoJiafkRw https://t.co/xo2O7AGlyx— Betsy Klein (@Betsy Klein)1488764501.0
"I apologize to Kellyanne Conway and everyone who has found my comments to be offensive," he said.
At the Washington Press Club Foundation’s Annual Congressional Dinner last week, Richmond discussed a viral photograph of Conway kneeling on a couch in the Oval Office in what appeared to be an attempt to take a picture of Trump's meeting with leaders of historically black universities.
I have so many questions about this photo, but chief among them is why nobody is telling Kellyanne Conway to get he… https://t.co/21br1UPP6w— Rex Huppke (@Rex Huppke)1488248960.0
“I really just want to know what was going on [in the photo], because I won’t tell anybody and you can just explain to me that circumstance, because she really looked to me familiar in that position,” Richmond said.
“Don’t answer — and I don’t want you to refer back to the 1990s,” Richmond added, a reference to a joke told earlier in the evening by Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.), who said he didn’t understand the firestorm caused by the photo.
"Come on, people. You remember the '90s. That couch has had a whole lot of worse things. Come on now," Scott said.
Richmond’s joke sparked outrage and was widely condemned as sexist, including the daughter of Trump’s former rival Hillary Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, who called the comment “despicable” and said that Conway deserves an apology.
Despicable. I hope @KellyannePolls receives the apology she deserves-certainly never thought I'd write that & I mea… https://t.co/WoTkv8kaPd— Chelsea Clinton (@Chelsea Clinton)1488557289.0
Thank you, @ChelseaClinton. As strong women, as moms to Charlottes...appreciate you speaking out on this. https://t.co/rxBnXq553t— Kellyanne Conway (@Kellyanne Conway)1488566839.0
Richmond initially stood by his remarks, saying in a statement Thursday, “Where I grew up saying that someone is looking or acting ‘familiar’ simply means that they are behaving too comfortably."
(H/T: Washington Examiner)