One of the latest targets of comedian Sacha Baron Cohen has announced his intention to resign from Congress after footage of his offensive and bizarre conduct aired on the Showtime series “Who is America?” this week.
Cohen portrays a number of characters in an attempt to convince prominent Americans to accept a false interview premise and engage in embarrassing or compromising behavior.
The tactic worked during Cohen’s interview with an already controversial Republican lawmaker in Georgia, according to IJ Review.
State Rep. Jason Spencer was recorded making derogatory impressions of Asian tourists while taking pictures of a woman from under her burka.
He then appeared to voluntarily scream the N-word repeatedly during another supposed security exercise with Cohen, who presented himself as an Israeli security expert.
Though his racist conduct was aggressively denounced by members of both parties, Spencer’s bizarre behavior also included his willingness to drop his pants and underwear before backing himself into the comedian. He seemed to believe he was engaging in a tactic meant to disarm Islamic terrorists.
Spencer attempted to brace for the impact with a statement before the episode aired on Sunday, though it did little to minimize backlash.
He said Showtime producers “exploited (his) state of mind for profit and notoriety.”
The profane and offensive display earned a swift rebuke from fellow Republicans in the state, including Gov. Nathan Deal.
“The actions and language used by Jason Spencer are appalling and offensive,” he tweeted. “There is no excuse for this type of behavior, ever, and I am saddened and disgusted by it.”
Many other critics went further by demanding Spencer’s resignation. In response to mounting pressure, he has announced his intention to resign this month.
Spencer, who was elected in 2010, has faced similar calls in the past for his public statements.
As CNN reported, he reacted harshly last year to a black former state representative advocating for the removal of Confederate monuments.
He claimed that LaDawn Jones would not be “met with torches but something a lot more definitive” if she did not end her activism.
Spencer later reacted to a critic of his comments by saying the individual “will go missing in the Okefenokee,” referencing a Georgia swamp.
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