Rep. David Stringer under fire from own party again for race comments
PHOENIX – Arizona Rep. David Stringer is under fire from his own party again for comments about race.
In audio obtained by the Phoenix New Times and published Friday morning, the Prescott Republican can be heard saying of African-Americans, “They don’t blend in. They always look different.”
The comments were made to students questioning the recently re-elected state lawmaker after he appeared at a Nov. 19 lecture by Arizona State University political history professor Don Critchlow, according to the New Times.
In addition to saying non-white immigrants have a hard time assimilating, Stringer called the cost of educating children whose first language isn’t English “a burden on the taxpayers.”
On Friday afternoon, Arizona Speaker of the House-elect Rusty Bowers issued a strong statement denouncing Stringer’s comments.
“Representative Stringer’s comments are vile and won’t be tolerated,” Bowers said. “His remarks don’t reflect the sentiments of the Arizona Legislature, the constituents we represent, and the policies we enact.
“Given the diversity of my own family, I take personal offense to these disgusting comments.”
Bowers also said Stringer agreed to his request to resign as chair of the Sentencing and Recidivism Reform Committee.
Stringer’s constituents don’t seem to mind his views about race.
Despite being called upon by state party leaders to resign from the Legislature in June after he said “there aren’t enough white kids to go around,” he easily won re-election to a second term earlier this month.
He finished second in both the Republican primary and general election for one of two seats representing District 1, which covers most of Yavapai County.
In the general election, he received more than twice as many votes as the third-place finisher, Democrat Jan Manolis.
After video of Stringer’s comments at the Yavapai County Republican Men’s Forum in June were made public, state GOP Chairman Jonathan Lines called for the lawmaker to “to resign immediately.”
Other Republican leaders also weighed in.
Gov. Doug Ducey gave his support to Lines’ call for Stringer’s ouster, while Speaker J.D. Mesnard and Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich condemned Stringer’s comments.
Stringer refused to step down and argued that his comments were taken out of context.