This happened in a big hurry.
State Rep. Rick Miller, R-Sugar Land, is no longer running for reelection after he sparked a firestorm for saying he was facing primary challengers because they are “Asian.”
“During a recent interview with the Houston Chronicle I made some statements that were insensitive and inexcusable,” Miller said in a statement to The Texas Tribune. “In trying to make a point about the campaign I used a poor choice of words that are not indicative of my character or heart.”
“I do not want to be a distraction for my party or my constituents, and therefore I have decided not to seek re-election,” he continued.
In an interview with the Houston Chronicle, Miller said that two of his Republican opponents — former Fort Bend GOP Chairman Jacey Jetton and Houston Fire Department analyst Leonard Chan — likely joined the race because they’re Asian in a district with a sizable Asian population.
“He’s a Korean. He has decided because, because he is an Asian that my district might need an Asian to win. And that’s kind of racist in my mind, but anyway, that’s not necessary, at least not yet,” Miller said of Jetton.
The backlash was swift earlier Tuesday as Gov. Greg Abbott pulled his endorsement of Miller and the Fort Bend county GOP chair asked him to consider dropping out.
Chan “jumped in probably for the same reason,” Miller told the Chronicle. “I don’t know, I never met the guy. I have no idea who he is. He has not been around Republican channels at all, but he’s an Asian.”
Here’s that Houston Chronicle story. As we know, Beto carried HD26 in 2018, though Miller hung on. There are now four Dems lined up to run, and it seems likely some other Republicans will now get in. Whether this winds up making the seat easier for them to hold or not remains to be seen.
I don’t have anything else to say about this, so let me turn the rest of this post over to Rep. Gene Wu.
I do not revel in Rep. Rick Miller’s retirement today.
His statement about Asian Americans were divisive, insulting, and hurtful to the growing Asian American community in Texas.
Unfortunately, his statement reflect a common mindset about minority communities.
— Gene Wu (@GeneforTexas) 6:12 PM – 3 December 2019
Go read the rest.