Oops! Tea Party Rep. Makes Huge, Cringe-Worthy Gaffe At Hearing

by
Lauren Burgoon
Rep. Curt Clawson might need to brush up on the whole 'the U.S. is a melting pot' idea.

Awk-ward!

Rep. Curt Clawson (R-Fla.) delivered a patronizing request to two people at a hearing Friday for business cooperation between "our governments." As in the U.S. and India.

Only problem: The two, Nisha Biswal and Arun Kumar, are senior American officials at the State Department and Commerce Department.

In a syrupy tone dripping with condescension, Clawson makes sure to tell the pair he knows and loves their country. He's seen - and loved! - Bollywood movies. Hey, he even understands the complications of "so many languages, so many cultures and so many histories all rolled up in one." (Come to think of it, that could describe the U.S., too.)

The Clawson fake-asks for cooperation between the U.S. and Indian governments with what can only be described as a cat-that-ate-the-canary grin on his face. Somehow, that grin managed to stay in place even after Biswal reminded the congressman she and Kumar are American.

It's not an auspicious start to Clawson's Congressional career; he just won a special election a month ago to claim his seat for Florida's 19th District.