Buffalo's school board voted 6-2 Thursday to try to get rid of a controversial ninth member—Carl Paladino, co-chair of Donald Trump's New York campaign. The board gave Paladino 24 hours to resign over what it called "unambiguously racist" and "morally repugnant" remarks about the Obamas he made last week, reports the Huffington Post. Paladino, who unsuccessfully ran for governor as a Republican in 2010, told Buffalo weekly Artvoice that he wanted to see President Obama die of mad cow disease in 2017, and for Michelle Obama to "return to being a male" and live in a cave in Zimbabwe with a gorilla. The board said that if Paladino won't quit, it will petition New York Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia to remove him, the Buffalo News reports.
"Words matter, Mr. Paladino," said School Board President Barbara Seals Nevergold at a raucous meeting Thursday, which Paladino did not attend. "The impact on children of color, especially African-American children, is incalculable," she said. "They would like me to tell you, 'You're fired.'" Other board members accused Paladino of racism and other misconduct going back many years. Paladino, who has said he won't step down, issued a statement accusing the board of trying to get rid of him for exposing corruption. Earlier this week, Paladino—whose comments were called "reprehensible" by the Trump transition team—said his words were poorly chosen and claimed he had meant to forward his remarks to friends instead of sending them to Artvoice, the Wall Street Journal reports.