British politicians thoroughly denounced a member of the Northern Ireland Assembly after he referred to Vice President-elect Kamala Harris as “the Indian” on Twitter.
Lord John Kilclooney, who serves in the House of Lords in the British Parliament, asked in a now-deleted tweet this inflammatory and racist question regarding the prospect of the 77-year-old President-elect Joe Biden passing away during his term: “What happens if Biden moves on and the Indian becomes President. Who then becomes Vice President?” Kilclooney asked before removing the tweet, according to NBC News.
On Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020, Harris, 56, became the first woman, first Black American and first South Asian American vice president-elect in U.S. history after she and Biden surpassed the 270 Electoral College vote threshold.
At least two British politicians have come out publicly against Kilclooney, prompting him to try to explain his Twitter post while remaining defiant.
Whilst Biden is proud to be Irish and Harris is rightly proud of her Indian background I certainly withdraw my reference to her as an Indian as it seems to have upset some people. I did not know her name and identified her with the term Indian. Most people understood.Racist NO.
— Lord John Kilclooney (@KilclooneyJohn) November 9, 2020
When the backlash refused to relent, Kilclooney doubled down on the defense of his tweet. He remained obstinate and defiant in his refusal to apologize or even consider it a racist post.
With reference to the controversy about my recent tweet about the USA Presidency a biased report in the New York Times has been brought to my attention. I defended the tweet but it claims that I ‘tried’ to defend. Also states British lawmakers condemned the tweet. It was a few!!
— Lord John Kilclooney (@KilclooneyJohn) November 10, 2020
Kilclooney’s colleagues demanded that he show contrition and be reprimanded for such an outlandish statement.
He did it before to Leo Varadkar and now he's done it to Kamala Harris. This sort of racism would be unacceptable from anyone, but from a member of the House of Lords it beggars belief. Action must be taken. https://t.co/2JbWFbqr9r
— Wes Streeting MP (@wesstreeting) November 9, 2020
Lord Kilclooney should retract and apologise. This is an offensive way to refer to anyone, let alone a woman who has just made history. The comment is entirely unacceptable and has no place in British politics. I could not be clearer.
— Lord Speaker (@LordSpeaker) November 9, 2020
Members of the public also got into the act, challenging why someone who looks like Kilclooney would have the nerve to talk down about someone else.
Y’all this is his face LMAO 🤣 Damn…. pic.twitter.com/J9Dhw2T2vh
— Sharky (@lo_sharky) November 9, 2020
Currently quivering with rage pic.twitter.com/lJcvYK8czb
— Ed Lyness (@EdShnee) November 10, 2020
Who on earth would ever say ‘The Indian’ when a quick Google search would have yielded her name? It’s just incomprehensible how this could come about and be defended.
— Nick Singleton (@NickSingleton15) November 10, 2020