Rep. Virgil Peck makes comment about using hunters in helicopters to battle illegal immigration
Topeka House Speaker Mike O'Neal on Wednesday blasted Democrats who have filed a resolution condemning state Rep. Virgil Peck, R-Tyro, for a comment he made about shooting undocumented immigrants.
“Representative Peck spent a few seconds uttering a comment for which he has since apologized numerous times,” said O’Neal, R-Hutchinson. “The Democrats have spent more than two months focusing on a statement that all parties, including Representative Peck, agree was inappropriate and regrettable.
"No further time, energy or money should be wasted rehashing this event in an attempt to distract from the priorities of growing the economy, increasing jobs in Kansas and passing a responsible budget,” O'Neal said in a news release as the Legislature reconvened its session.
House Democratic Leader Paul Davis of Lawrence, however, said Peck's remarks are worthy of a vote of condemnation in the House.
“He has brought shame on the institution” of the Legislature, Davis said. Davis said Peck has not shown the proper amount of remorse for his comment.
During a House committee meeting in March, Peck compared illegal immigrants to feral hogs and said perhaps the state should shoot them from helicopters. He later said he was joking and initially refused to apologize. Under pressure from Republican leaders, he issued a two-sentence apology in a news release one day later.