Rep. Ed Case apologized Wednesday after he claimed at an event for Asian American and Pacific Islander voters that he’s an “Asian trapped in a white body.”
Mr. Case, a Hawaii Democrat, sparked a social media backlash over the reported comment he made Tuesday at a Washington event billed as a “celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander members of the 116th Congress.”
According to National Journal fellow Nicholas Wu, Mr. Case, who represents a majority Asian district in Honolulu, declared at the event, “I’m an Asian trapped in a white body.”
Congressman Ed Case, who represents a majority Asian district in Honolulu – “I’m an Asian trapped in a white body” pic.twitter.com/Roro6Yk8CW
— Nicholas Wu (@nicholaswu12) January 16, 2019
Mr. Case apologized for any offense caused by the remark, after members of the Asian and Pacific Islander community slammed it as tone deaf.
“Like so many others from Hawaii who treasure our multicultural heritage, I have absorbed and live the values of our many cultures,” Mr. Case said in a statement provided to The Washington Post. “They and not my specific ethnicity are who I am, and I believe that this makes me an effective advocate on national issues affecting our API community.”
“I regret if my specific remarks to the national API community on my full absorption of their concerns caused any offense,” he said.
Spokesman Nestor Garcia added that the congressman was commenting “on what his Japanese-American wife sometimes says about him.”
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