Fox News host Bill O’Reilly, saying he was angered by Democrats who are using the terrorist attack in Orlando, Fla., in their push for gun control legislation, said he felt like slapping one of those lawmakers, Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.).
O’Reilly, speaking on Fox and Friends, said Clyburn wanted to turn the nation’s attention away from terrorism and on to gun control, a move which drew O’Reilly’s ire, even though, as Western Journal reported, O’Reilly stood with liberals who were calling for the banning of certain “assault rifles.”
The Fox News personality mimicked Clyburn’s speech and then added, “You know, and I just want to slap him, with all due respect.”
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Negative reaction to O’Reilly’s comment about Clyburn was swift, with black lawmakers immediately calling on him to retract his comments and apologize to Clyburn. O’Reilly is white and Clyburn is black.
Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D-N.C.), chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, told Politico that the caucus “is absolutely outraged” and demands that O’Reilly ”disavow the statement and apologize” to the congressman.
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Butterfield added that O’Reilly’s comments are “reminiscent” of the “reckless statements” being made by Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.
In response to the criticism, O’Reilly invited Clyburn to speak on The O’Reilly Factor on Monday.
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