Rep. Lance Gooden (R-Texas) is doubling down on his attack on Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calf.) despite receiving bipartisan pushback, arguing that it is not “xenophobic” to question the congresswoman’s loyalty to her country.
In a tweet on Sunday, Gooden pointed to Chu’s vote against a resolution creating a select committee to investigate China, and he cited reporting from The Daily Caller that said Chu — the first Chinese American congresswoman — had been appointed to an honorary position in an organization with ties to the Communist Party of China.
“Democrat @RepJudyChu: Voted AGAINST committee to investigate China. Named ‘Honorary Chairwoman’ of CCP front group. It’s not ‘xenophobic’ to question where her loyalty lies,” Gooden wrote on Twitter.
The Hill reached out to Chu for comment. She defended herself against Gooden’s previous remarks, calling his comments “absolutely outrageous” and “racist.”
The political firestorm began last week, when Gooden suggested that Chu should not receive access to sensitive classified materials because she defended Dominic Ng, who President Biden appointed to lead U.S. trade interests in Asia. Ng has been accused of having ties to the Chinese Communist Party, prompting a group of House GOP lawmakers to ask the FBI to investigate the appointee.
“I question her either loyalty or competence,” Gooden said of Chu during an interview on Fox News. “If she doesn’t realize what’s going on then she’s totally out of touch with one of her core constituencies.”
Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle condemned the remarks.
“Let me say we should not question anybody’s loyalty to the United States. I think that is out of bounds. It’s beyond the pale,” Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Wis.), the chairman of the China select committee, told CBS’s “Face The Nation” on Sunday.
“Absolutely, we shouldn’t question anybody’s loyalty,” he added.
During that same interview, Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (Ill.), the top Democrat on the panel, called Gooden’s comments “offensive.”
In a separate statement, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) said the Texas Republican’s “slanderous accusations” against Chu was “dangerous, unconscionable and xenophobic.”
Updated: 4:27 p.m.