Congressional Candidate Calls On Fox News Host To Resign Over Racial Slur

Congressional Candidate Calls On Fox News Host To Resign Over Racial Slur

A congressional candidate in California is urging Fox News host Bob Beckel to resign after Beckel used a racial slur on air last week.

While discussing a report on Chinese hackers delving into U.S. government records on Thursday's episode of "The Five," Beckel began ranting about "Chinamen."

"As usual, we bring them over here and we teach a bunch of Chinamen -- er, Chinese people -- how to do computers and then they go back to China and hack into us," he said.

California state Sen. Ted Lieu (D) called Beckel's comments "racist" in a statement Saturday.

"We should all be alarmed by the racist, xenophobic comments by Fox News host Bob Beckel," said Lieu. "His comments have no place in America, and this is at least the second time he has used racial slurs. He must resign immediately."

Lieu was referencing another incident last year, when Beckel described his eyes as "Oriental."

"I went swimming. My eyes blew up, and it made me look Oriental," Beckel said.

Lieu, an immigrant from Taiwan and an Air Force veteran, is the Democratic candidate in the race to replace retiring Rep. Henry Waxman (D) in California's 33rd district. The district is known for its wealth, as it includes Beverly Hills and Malibu. It also encompasses racially and ethnically diverse Los Angeles suburbs. Torrance, which Lieu represents in the state Senate, has a substantial Asian population. According to the 2010 census, nearly 35 percent of its population is Asian.

I am one of those ‘Chinamen' with 'Oriental' eyes that immigrated to America and majored in computer science. I also served on active duty in the United States Air Force and continue to serve my country in the Reserves," Lieu said in the statement. "And today, as an American and as a California state senator, I call on Mr. Beckel to resign."

UPDATE: 5:05 p.m. -- Rep. Mike Honda (D-Calif.) called on Beckel to resign Monday. Honda, who is Japanese American, represents the only Asian American-majority congressional district in the continental United States. Honda's statement:

I am outraged and disgusted by Fox News commentator Bob Beckel’s use of the word “Chinamen” and his other racist and xenophobic comments. I agree with State Senator Ted Lieu, Campbell CA Councilmember Evan Low, and everyone else who has called on Fox News to fire Beckel. The ignorance and hatred in his comments are repugnant. The fact that he has yet to apologize for these comments is inexcusable. As the founder of the Congressional Anti-Bullying Caucus, I know that words hurt, and slurs are used to intimidate. Fox News needs to do the right thing and fire Bob Beckel.

Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.) also called on Beckel to resign Friday:

The racist comments of Fox host Bob Beckel are utterly outrageous. He condemns an entire ethnic group as being threats to national security and uses racial slurs while doing so

The implications go far beyond the Chinese community by promoting a culture of intolerance that has no place in our society. Unfortunately, the Asian American and Pacific Islander community knows all too well the dangers of these xenophobic views. All we have to do is look to the fear mongering and hysteria of the 1980s that resulted in the murder of Vincent Chin by two white unemployed autoworkers to see how tragedy can occur when racism and xenophobia are tolerated.

As a Chinese American, I am deeply offended by Bob Beckel’s comments and call for his immediate resignation.

Clarification: Due to a copyediting error, this article initially prefaced Chu's letter by saying it called for Honda's, rather than Beckel's, resignation.

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Larry Taylor

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