Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) has finally addressed the leaked audio of herself berating staffers — though she refused to actually apologize for the incident, instead attempting to downplay the problem.
In the leaked audio, which is less than two minutes long, the Democrat congresswoman is heard calling her staffers “fat a— stupid idiots” and “big a— children f—king idiots” — while also telling them that they “serve no g—d— purpose.”
From the context of the tape, it appears that Jackson Lee was verbally attacking her staff over an event that should have been added to her schedule.
Leaked audio obtained by @CurrentRevolt shows Democrat Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee berating a staffer: "F**king idiots serve no goddamn purpose … Nobody gives a shit about what you're doing and you ain't doing shit!"
(WARNING: Explicit language) pic.twitter.com/Lzl4AmKhkS
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) October 21, 2023
On Monday evening, Jackson Lee addressed the scandal that has affected her campaign to become mayor of Houston, Texas.
In the statement, the Democrat congresswoman claimed that she “strongly believes that everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect” — including her staff.
Jackson Lee, who Fox News noted has a reputation as one of the “meanest” people in Congress, went on to state that she was “not perfect” and has a lot of “zeal” for serving her constituents.
“To anyone who has listened to this recording with concern, I am regretful and hope you will judge me not by something trotted out by a political opponent that worked to exploit this, and backed by extreme Republican supporters on the very day that polls open, but from what I’ve delivered to Houstonians over my years of public service,” she wrote, refusing to give a direct apology.
The Democrat congresswoman also tried to downplay the issue of berating her staffers by insisting that many people who worked for her in the past have gone on to “bigger and better opportunities.”
Jackson Lee then dismissed the leaked audio as a “political attack and stunt.”
She is now trying to deflect from the scandal using a conveniently-timed incident in which one of her staffers was allegedly attacked by a “political operative” near his office — claiming that the attack was caused by “dangerous conspiracy rhetoric” from “Republican extremists.”
“We are deeply concerned by these attacks and this is yet another example of how dangerous conspiracy rhetoric inflamed by Republican extremists has real consequences where people get hurt. We have taken additional security measures and we will continue to move forward with our task at hand,” the Democrat congresswoman wrote in a statement after the incident, adding that her office was focused on electing “the best choice for Mayor of Houston, Sheila Jackson Lee.”
Critics on social media have argued that the incident was too convenient for Jackson Lee, asserting that it happened just in time to distract from her scandal.
Report: US Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee’s campaign chair assaulted
This never happened. I'm calling it right now.https://t.co/coDwbr6bxI
— Kenny Webster (@KennethRWebster) October 24, 2023