Kansas governor calls for commissioner to resign after he tells Black woman he’s part of ‘master race’
After a white Kansas county commissioner, Louis Klemp, came under fire for an offensive statement to a Black city planner saying that he belongs to “the master race”, the Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer has joined with the mayor in calling for his immediate resignation.
—Mayor calls for resignation of white Kansas county official who tells Black woman he belongs to ‘master race’—
“Racial and discriminative language have no place in our society, and most especially when spoken by someone holding a public office,” Colyer said in a statement. “The inappropriate remarks made by Leavenworth County Commissioner Louis Klemp are unacceptable and do not reflect the values of the county which he represents. As such, I call on him to step down as County Commissioner.”
Klemp rejected a development plan introduced by the Triveece Penelton, a Black city planner when he made the controversial statement, the NY Daily News reports.
“I don’t want you to think I’m picking on you because we’re part of the master race,” Leavenworth County Commissioner Klemp told Penelton, who was making a presentation about a development project. As Klemp spoke, he motioned toward his teeth and noted that they both had “gaps,” which meant they’re part of a master race.
“You know you got a gap in your teeth, you’re the masters. Don’t ever forget that,” he said to Penelton. He then said he didn’t like any of the land use options that she had presented to the commission.
—Kim Porter’s friends and family members planning funeral arrangements—
Klemp’s statement was condemned by his colleagues.
“In the best interest of the county, he should resign,” Commissioners Doug Smith told The Leavenworth Times.
Mayor Mark Preisinger urged Klemp to apologize to the city planner.
“It just violated common decency. . . . It’s time for him to resign,” Preisinger said. “He’s been an embarrassment to the county, which reflects on the city and reflects on everyone.”
Klemp, who once ran for governor, told KSHB-TV that his comment was a joke. He has reportedly faced criticism in the past for making controversial and offensive comments.