A South Carolina GOP congressman opened an election debate Thursday by mocking the sexual misconduct accusations brought against President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh.
“Did you hear about this?” asked Rep. Ralph Norman (R-S.C.), who has represented South Carolina’s 5th Congressional District since 2017, according to The Post and Courier.
“Ruth Bader Ginsburg came out saying she was groped by Abraham Lincoln,” he said about the 85-year-old Supreme Court Justice.
The Post and Courier noted that the joked sparked nervous laughter at the venue.
South Carolina Democrats quickly denounced the remark as “inappropriate.”
South Carolina Republican Rep. Ralph Norman: "Did y'all hear the latest late-breaking news on the Kavanaugh hearings? Ruth Bader Ginsburg came out that she was groped by Abraham Lincoln." https://t.co/qfEneGbxxZ pic.twitter.com/p51z9UZkEt
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) September 20, 2018
“Ralph Norman just proved he may be rich but he doesn’t have any class,” Democratic Party chairman Trav Robertson tweeted. “Inappropriate doesn’t describe his remarks.”
@jslovegrove Ralph Norman just proved he may be rich but he doesn’t have any class. His opening joke about RBG’s comments on the Kavanaugh hearings—“RBG, I don’t know what the problem is…Abe Lincoln grouped me…” inappropriate doesn’t describe his remarks.
— Trav Robertson (@TravRobertson) September 20, 2018
Norman’s Democratic opponent in this year’s midterm election, Archie Parnell, also denounced the comment.
“My opponent apparently thinks sexual assault is a joke. It is not,” Parnell said. “But I guess that’s the best we can expect from someone who pulled a loaded gun on his own constituents.”