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Michigan Democrat Sorry for Racist Remarks About Rival

She told people not to vote for the 'ching-chong'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 17, 2018 1:51 AM CDT
Stephanie Chang is the first Asian-American woman to serve in the Michigan Legislature.   (AP Photo/Courtesy of Stephanie Chang)
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(Newser) – "Those are not ... the kind of comments I would usually make," a Michigan state lawmaker said Thursday, apologizing for racist remarks she was overheard making about an Asian-American rival. State Rep. Bettie Cook Scott, who faced state Rep. Stephanie Chang and four other candidates in the Democratic primary for state Senate District 1, was overheard telling people in Detroit not to vote for the "ching-chong," and saying she was sick of "seeing black people holding signs for these Asians and not supporting their own people," the Detroit News reports.

Chang's husband Sean Gray, who is black, tells the Detroit Metro Times that Scott called him a "fool" for marrying Chang after he challenged Scott's remarks about immigrants from China "coming over and taking our community from us." Chang ended up winning the Aug. 7 primary with around 50% of the vote, while Scott came third with 11%. Scott apologized under pressure from 19 community groups and the state Democratic Party, which said it expected better "from anyone who wants to call themselves a Michigan Democrat," reports the Detroit Free Press. In a statement, Scott said she humbly apologized to Chang, Gray, and "the broader Asian-American community." (Read more Michigan stories.)

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