(JTA) — A Washington state Republican Party county chair resigned after saying that she made a mistake in inviting a white supremacist to speak at a local GOP event.
Cecily Wright said she wanted to “profoundly apologize” for giving James Allsup a platform to speak at a Spokane Tea Party gathering, the Daily Forward reported Thursday.
Wright introduced Allsup, who marched with neo-Nazis at the Charlottesville far-right rally in August 2017, during the July 11 meeting as a victim of “label lynching” before showing a video of him speaking at a 2016 Trump rally.
“The Spokane County GOP remains committed to standing against white supremacy, racism, and bigotry in all forms,” she wrote on the group’s Facebook page on Wednesday. “We will always support a free society where individuals are judged on the content of their character rather than the color of their skin.”
Prior to her resignation, Wright had defended her hosting of Allsup.
Allsup, a former Republican campus leader at Washington State University, has advocated infiltrating the GOP from the grassroots level and recently won a seat as a local party precinct officer. During the Charlottesville march, he was seen chuckling as fellow marchers shouted about blacks using the n-word.
“If you want diversity, just move to South Africa,” he shouted. “You’ll also get raped and beaten and murdered.”
Allsup also filmed himself walking alongside a fellow protester flying a Nazi flag.
In an appearance last September on the white nationalist podcast “Fash the Nation,” Allsup said that followers could take over a local college Republican group if they had “three or four fashy goy” (fascist, non-Jewish) friends.
Washington state Democratic leader Tina Podlodowski said in a statement Wednesday that she took particular issue with Wright’s embrace of Allsup.
“Not only did Cecily Wright defend James Allsup, she introduced him as the victim of ‘label lynching’ — a grotesquely uninformed phrase that trivializes the violence inflicted on people of color by actual lynchings through our country’s history,” Podlodowski said.