Joe Fitzgibbon finds self in hot water after Tweeting Arizona is ‘racist wasteland’

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34th District State Representative Joe Fitzgibbon – a Democrat from Burien – found himself in a bit of hot water after the Seahawks lost to the Arizona Cardinals Sunday, when he sent out the following Tweet (which he deleted shortly after sending):


As you can imagine in this modern era of instant reactions, the Twitterverse exploded with numerous responses like these:

We managed to get a hold of Fitzgibbon, who offered this explanation to The B-Town Blog:

I think folks are taking my lame attempt at sports trash talk a little too seriously. I clearly miscalculated the appropriate boundaries there and I regret that some folks in Arizona take what I said as an insult to them. I also think, and the federal courts agree, that many of Arizona’s recent actions targeting immigrants are of questionable constitutionality, and that message didn’t come through in my 140 character message. I’m sorry for the offense caused and would rather be spending this time talking about the need to fix our broken immigration system and expand, not deny, voting rights.

We’re curious to see what our Readers think of this – was Fitzgibbon out of line? Was the strong reaction justified? Please leave a Comment below…

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24 Responses to “Joe Fitzgibbon finds self in hot water after Tweeting Arizona is ‘racist wasteland’”
  1. Chris Cain says:

    I just wish our elected officials could get as excited about their duties as they do the trivial game of football.

  2. tom says:

    if you cant say something nice shut the hell up

  3. TbC says:

    When will public people realize that they are just one tweet away from leaving no doubt about who they really are? Social media is such a wonderful thing. Moron.

  4. Chris says:

    Poor form on his part. I’d give him a pass if he had any political ethos at all–but he doesn’t. Get to work and do something meaningful as an elected official, instead of sending out judgmental tweets.

  5. Joe D says:

    So… is that like the opposite to Winning over a mountainous butt bangers wonderland?

  6. Loren says:

    Sounds like Joe lacks the humility to truly apologize when he makes racist, untrue comments about a whole class of people.

  7. Ron Santangelo says:

    I wish these politicians and activists from other states would just mind their own business and stay out of ours. They rarely have the slightest clue what they’re talking about, having chosen to accept the liberal talking point/propaganda as gospel. And I’d love to see how this fool and others like him would react if thousands of Canadians started ILLEGALLY pouring across his border stealing identities, taking jobs, driving down wages, driving up crime, demanding that our goevernment cater to their every whim, not bothering to learn English or integrate into the culture (yes I know that’s not French Canada), etc., etc., etc. Do all illegal immigrants do these things? No. But a lot of them certainly do, despite the sainthood that liberals have bestowed upon the entire lot of them.

    • Lee Moyer says:

      Why does “Ron Santangelo” make it seem like maybe Joe has a point? And if the Canadians invade, how are we going to know whom to blame and harass for all that is wrong when they are the same color as we are? Guess we better build another wall to keep out all who are different, just in case.
      It is interesting the way the agribusinesses and even wealthy local homeowners discriminate against all those hard working “Americans” clamoring to work for them and hire so many Hispanics who are new to the U S. .

  8. Christopher says:

    Thanks Joe for confirming my suspicions that liberals just as much a steaming pile of hate-mongers as the conservatives.

  9. Paris says:

    I only wish he hadn’t back-pedaled after the fact. If we could get politicians to be this honest and dedicated when doing their jobs, they might get more done!

  10. Carol Vernon says:

    Joe is much too irresponsible and childish to represent anyone. Some thoughts are better left unsaid, and instead, rethought. But he ‘tweets’ like a teenager then pouts that he is misunderstood. His lame attempt at trash talk turned into a lame attempt at an apology. Why did we elect this guy?

    • Greg L says:

      Carol, my sentiments exactly. I kept asking myself: How did this guy get elected? It’s the 34th District crony system, or, as I call it, “elevator system” that rotates folks with connections in and out of local government positions and, most of them having no real life work experience outside of politics and its machinery. So, we get Sharon Nelson’s intern in a position way over his head and rubber stamped by the Dems in the District. It is the Nickels, Constantine, et. al. group that lives in a vacuum. I say let’s put someone up for this position and breathe some fresh air into the 34th District!

      Thanks to the B-town Blog for covering this – both WCN and the WSB ignored it.

  11. jimmy says:

    wow do we ever see this much bs over a losing season no we don’t so go ahead keep paying $80 to $100 for a jersey $20 to $170 for parking another $100 or so for food,drinks,ect long wait for the bathroom all for what to see some one toss a ball and get tackle over and over and over its boring and not worth the time or money. When it comes down to it these players could care less if there a seahawk or on some other team as long as are getting a pay check and can get away with any crime there fine so when i see some one make a dumb tweet on dumb topic i tend not to care and if you want to complain about dumb tweets then your going have a lot of complaining to do twitter is fill with dumb tweets
    and yes I know I have long sentences o well no need to bicker over it this not a writing contest its a internet blog

    • H says:

      “when i see some one make a dumb tweet on dumb topic i tend not to care and if you want to complain about dumb tweets then your going have a lot of complaining to do twitter is fill with dumb tweets”

      If you don’t care, why did you type out a huge rant? Also, people are upset because the comment was racist, not just dumb. Big difference.

      ” these players could care less if there a seahawk or on some other team as long as are getting a pay check and can get away with any crime”

      What a horrible thing to say. Don’t make assumptions about a group of people you could “care less about”.

  12. michael J says:

    Joe is the worst legislature we have ever had and very lazy..

    He is a real do nothing guy and his recent comments put the icing on the cake..

    Be sure to vote for the other guy in the next election to get rid of him from the political system!!

    • Carole says:

      I love how many of these people, who don’t have a clue as to what Joe is doing in the legislature, have the audacity to call him lazy. He is, in fact, one of the hardest working guys in Olympia, chairman of the environment committee, on he sits on 3 other committees. He spends hours of his own time meeting with groups and constituents and you will never speak to someone who is better versed on the issues. So, before you start throwing out terms like lazy it would be wise for you to actually know the facts. This is a young, passionate politician who care deeply about his job as a lawmaker.

      • Greg L. says:

        Carole – I don’t see “how many of these people are claiming that Rep Fitzgibbon is lazy.” I think most of the comments point to his being unfit to hold the office after his outrageous tweet and abysmal (really embarrassing) attempt at an apology. This fiasco seems to have revealed an immaturity and serious lack of judgment as well as an inability to step back, reflect and offer a contrite and meaningful apology – brevity is certainly not his strength. Instead, we got a meandering attempt at an apology that appears more of a justification. I had a friend in another district read this and he found it almost bizarre: “He goes on and on and on…what’s his point?” Yes, many of us are asking that. I am simply embarrassed that this is the man is representing our interests in Olympia and I have no evidence that he is in fact “lazy” but I again, I do question his fitness to hold this office at this time.

        • Ivan Weiss says:

          You have about as much chance of voting Joe out of office as you do of flapping your arms and flying to the moon. If you don’t like what he said, fine, no one is saying you should. But please try to live in the real world. I’m telling you right now, any opponent who runs against Joe will be lucky to break 30 percent of the vote. So get real, will you?

      • Jay says:

        Carole – sounds like you’re pretty close to Joe. Why don’t you give him some of that same advice about having a clue about the facts. Do you think Joe was doing that when he made those comments?

        He’s an embarrassment. Leaders don’t say things like that period, much less in the public domain, and worse still to cap it off with the awful follow up comments. He shows ignorance intolerance and arrogance all at once.

  13. WC says:

    Remember him and VOTE-HIM-OUT come election time

  14. Theresa says:

    I appreciate the legislator’s attempt to speak truth around racist policy and biased enforcement. It’s clearly an issue that we’re just beginning to “talk” about in Burien, Des Moines, White Center and West Seattle. His choice of words on a public forum could have been chosen more carefully, so as not to upset the dominant voices. Joe’s comment was not racist however. His comment called out a state that has been known to violate citizen rights in the name of immigration enforcement. I hope he is remembered as a legislator who was willing to talk about the fact that many immigrants and non-immigrants alike are profiled and discriminated against for a whole slew of reasons. Should we be wasting time reprimanding him? No. Should we continue talking about race relations? Yes. Thanks Joe!

    • Greg L says:


      Good attempt at a defense but unfortunately, you miss a few things: first, there are appropriate times and places to debate these issues and, there are apologies and then there are and clumsy attempts at justifications. If you think that an immature and ill-considered tweet is the appropriate forum for a serious debate on immigration then, that is unfortunate. If you believe that anything other than: “I am sorry, I made a mistake and it won’t happen again.” is an apology, then, again, that too is unfortunate. I don’t think anyone is upset at “dominant voices” or otherwise – we probably agree that there is an issue in Arizona and around the country, I think folks were shocked that this is how our elected legislator chose to communicate on a very serious issue and then didn’t have the decency to offer a brief and sincere apology. Was it racist? Perhaps not, but it sure was offensive to many folks. I don’t want my representatives “calling out” folks via Twitter – again, inappropriate forum and really, debases the seriousness of this issue and the millions impacted. Let’s raise the discourse to a higher level.

  15. Rob says:

    I am sorry- ARE Y’ALL SAYING arizona is not a Racist desert wasteland?

  16. othersideofthetracks says:

    Some folks just dont know sarcasm when they hear it..Good grief people.

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