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Incoming Nevada Assembly Speaker Steps Down, Due to Racist Remarks


Ira Hansen

Ira Hansen

Ira Hansen, incoming speaker of the Nevada State Assembly notified his colleagues Sunday morning that he was resigning as Speaker Designee, saying, “Politics of personal destruction win. I need to step down.”

This comes after the Reno-Sparks NAACP charged Republicans in the Nevada Assembly on Thursday to take a second look at their decision to have Hansen serve as speaker in 2015, due to his numerous racial remarks.

Hansen reportedly made offensive remarks about people of color, gays and women, according to the weekly Reno News & Review. Some of his remarks include:

“The relationship of Negroes and Democrats is truly a master-slave relationship, with the benevolent master knowing what’s best for his simple minded darkies” and ”The lack of gratitude and the deliberate ignoring of white history in relation to eliminating slavery is a disgrace that Negro leaders should own up to.”

In an email to his colleagues, Hansen blamed the media for being forced to step down.

“Politics of personal destruction win,” he wrote, according to raw “I need to step down. I hope that you all know that the Ira that you have known through these years and weeks is the real Ira and not what the media is painting me to be. You are a great group that can hopefully do great things and my staying will harm the caucus. I wish you all the best. Thanks for hanging tough through these difficult past days. If this were just about ‘me’ I would fight this out to the bitter end, but it is going to harm all of you. Carry on.”

He expressed these sentiments once again in a public statement.

“For the greater good of the State of Nevada and the cause I support it is necessary for me to withdraw as Speaker Designee,” the statement read. “The tens of thousands of people who both read my columns and listened to my radio shows through two decades in the media know this has been a carefully orchestrated attack to remove a conservative Republican from a major leadership role in State government.”

Hansen went on to say “The deliberate character assassination and the politics of personal destruction have totally distorted my views and record. Ultimately, this whole attack has very little to do with my views. The powers that be are planning a massive, more than one billion dollar, tax increase and I stood in the way as Speaker.”

He was unclear as to whether he would be giving up his seat entirely.

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