(JTA) — A Texas state representative apologized after using the slur "Jew them down" during a public hearing.
Larry Taylor at a legislative oversight hearing on Nov. 3 concerning a quasi-public wind insurance agency and its need to pay claims on time said "Don’t nitpick, don’t try to Jew them down." He reportedly quickly added, "That’s probably a bad term."
In a written statement following the hearing, Taylor said, "At a legislative oversight committee hearing today, I inadvertently used a phrase that many people find offensive. I corrected myself immediately when I realized what I had said. I regret my poor choice of words and sincerely apologize for any harm they may have caused."
In an apology letter to the Anti-Defamation League, which slammed his use of the slur, Taylor wrote: "Anti-Semitism and intolerance have no place in our society and in our government. I understand the impact of my comments and am deeply sorry for the message that was sent. I have a deep respect for the Jewish people and their history, and hope to work to strengthen that relationship in the future."
Taylor is running for a seat in the Texas state Senate next year.