Virginia Republican State Rep. Nick Freitas has received mad props for an epic speech delivered on the floor of the House of Delegates last week in which he blasted the hate routinely flowing out of the mouths of Democrats.
“If you’re going to question the faith and the intentions of anybody who happens to disagree with you on policy, then you don’t get to lecture us on compassion and tolerance or an open debate,” Freitas said during his speech.
Enough. I have had it, my constituents have had it, and I am no longer going to sit here while a member of this body accuses us of being bigots simply because we disagree on policy. pic.twitter.com/dx0uMyFmnB
— Nick Freitas (@NickForVA) January 26, 2022
“I’m keeping a running tally of this session, we’re not very far into it, and almost every day someone on the other side of the aisle gets up and either subtly, or comes right out and suggests, that if you don’t agree with them on policy, well then you’re not a Christian, you’re a sexist, you’re a bigot, you’re a racist,” he added.
This is a speech every Republican needs to take to heart:
I was asked by a colleague of mine on the other side of the aisle, someone I actually deeply respect, and she asked me, was I going to be ‘nice’ this session?
And I thought it was an interesting question. I don’t particularly think of myself as an un-nice person, but I can see how sometimes people would see that differently.
You know what I’ve never done, Mr. Speaker? I’ve never gone on this floor and challenged the faith of an elected official because I disagreed with them on policy. I’ve never gone on this floor and suggested that the other side of the aisle were racists because they didn’t agree with my particular policy positions. I’ve never suggested they were sexists because they disagreed with a particular policy position.
But I’m keeping a running tally of this session, we’re not very far into it, and almost every day someone on the other side of the aisle gets up and either subtly, or comes right out and suggests that if you don’t agree with them on policy, well then you’re not a Christian, you’re a sexist, you’re a bigot, you’re a racist.
But the moment someone actually stands up and says, wait a second, no, I’m not going to accept that. If you want to debate me on the merits of our particular policies, I’m happy to have that discussion, but the moment you claim with no evidence other than you don’t agree on a particular policy position, the moment you claim that makes us racists or sexists or bigoted.
I’ve got news, Mr. Speaker: This was tried during the election cycle. You had a lot of parents coming to their local elected officials asking questions about what was going on in their schools, and the initial response was it is not there. And then when they saw evidence that it was, based on what their kids were saying to then, and they went back and reissued the concern, they were told you must be a racist. Because that has been the repeated narrative coming from certain members of the other side of the aisle.
There have been a lot of times we sat here politely and just took it. Mr. Speaker, not this time. I’m tired of it, my constituents are tired of it.
Because when these claims are made, they’re not just made against Gov. Youngkin, they’re not just made against us, they’re made in part against the people that elected to send us here.
And I don’t know a single person in this chamber that I would define as racist or sexist or bigoted. We have very different ideas about how to get to articular end states where all Virginians can be happy, healthy, prosperous, and free.
But just so I’m very clear: Will I be nice this session, I would certainly like to be, but I am not about to sit here and listen to that, Mr. Speaker, and then go home to my constituents and have them ask me, why didn’t you stand up and defend us.
So, let’s have a robust policy discussion, but if you’re going to question the faith and the intentions of anybody who happens to disagree with you on policy, then you don’t get to lecture us on compassion and tolerance or an open debate.
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