Two Republican congresswomen from California pulled their support of GOP House candidate Sery Kim of Texas after she said this week that she didn’t want Chinese immigrants to come to the U.S. and blamed them for the spread of coronavirus.
The pair, Reps. Young Kim and Michelle Steel, said in a joint statement Friday, “We cannot in good conscience continue to support her candidacy.”
“As the first Korean American Republican women to serve in Congress, we want to empower and lift up fellow members of the AAPI community who want to serve their communities,” they said.
Sery Kim’s campaign did not immediate respond to a request for comment.
The candidate, who’s also Korean American, made false, anti-Chinese remarks earlier this week during a candidate forum in suburban Fort Worth.
“I don’t want them here at all,” she said Wednesday. “They steal our intellectual property, they give us coronavirus, they don’t hold themselves accountable.”
“I can say that because I’m Korean,” she argued.
The nation’s first confirmed case of Covid-19 was a 35-year-old, Snohomish County, Washington, man, who had visited Wuhan, China, and other infections likely resulted from that.
Several of the initial coronavirus outbreaks in California and the East Coast were linked to people who had just come from Europe, where they were likely infected, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found.
Sery Kim, who worked in the Small Business Administration during the Trump administration, is running in a May 1 special election to fill the 6th Congressional District seat left vacant when Ron Wright died earlier this year from Covid-19 complications.
Young Kim and Steel said they tried to get Sery Kim to apologize to no avail.
“We talked with Sery Kim yesterday about her hurtful and untrue comments about Chinese immigrants, and made clear that her comments were unacceptable,” the duo said.