Tarrant City Councilor Tommy Bryant used racial slurs at a council meeting on Monday while gesturing towards City Councilor Veronica Freeman, who then left the meeting visibly shaken.
The video shows a restless Bryant discussing social media posts allegedly made by his wife with Mayor Wayman Newton and another city councilor when someone in the audience claimed Bryant’s wife used a racial epithet.
This prompted Bryant to slam his hand across a desk, saying “let’s get to the N word,” a video shows.
“Hey, do we have a house n —- r here?” Bryant said, causing the crowd to gasp. ” Do we? Hey, isn’t it? “
Bryant then raised his hand towards Freeman, saying, “Would she like to stand up, please?” That’s what the mayor called him, what do you think?
Bryant claimed he was simply repeating what Newman had previously called Freeman, a claim denied by the mayor, AL.com reported.
“They’re trying to expose me for saying something I didn’t say,” Newton told the outlet. “It was all a political stunt that they didn’t do very well. “
Newton alleged that Freeman joined with Bryant and other white city council members in blocking his proposals, including reorganizing Tarrant’s finance department, AL.com reported.
“I never used that phrase to refer to her,” Newton said. “Ask them to produce the video. They record everything. They should have their own registration. They want me to go out. [Bryant] wants to run for town hall.
Bryant told the WBRC he said the insult to call the mayor and that he had no intention of resigning. Alabama Democrats called for his resignation, saying in a statement he was “racist and unfit” to serve.
“Alabama still has a long way to go when it comes to racing, but getting close to the KKK and using the N word should make you unfit to serve,” said the statement read. “These racists are in the history books with Bull Connor and George Wallace, not the taxpayer’s payroll. “
The Alabama chapter NAACP is also calling on Bryant to step down, AL.com reported.
Bryant insisted he was okay with using the term because Newton had previously used it in a “pejorative way” towards Freeman.
“Absolutely not,” Bryant told WIAT when asked if he would resign. “I might even consider running for town hall next time. “
An attorney for Freeman, meanwhile, said Bryant’s explosion was clearly off limits.
“The statements constitute unwarranted racial discrimination and harassment,” Freeman’s lawyer said. “Such statements are also deeply hurtful and absolutely unacceptable in our society. “
Attempts to reach Bryant on Thursday failed.