A Kansas County commissioner is facing calls to apologize after telling a black woman that he is part of the “master race” during a routine public planning meeting.
The remark was made on Tuesday by Leavenworth County commissioner Louis Klemp, a white man, and seemingly directed at a woman presenting for an architecture firm. It has been branded as racist—and local media reported it was not the first time Klemp has sparked controversy.
“I don’t want you to feel like I’m picking on you. Because we are part of the master race,” he said in the meeting. “You have a gap in your teeth you’re the master race, don’t ever forget that.”
Bob Holland, another Leavenworth County commissioner, told KCTV5 that Klemp—who is reportedly due to leave his position on January 15 next year—should make an apology.
“What’s this master race?” Holland said on Wednesday. “None of us are a master race. We are all Americans, we are all human beings. I think he is a racist. I do. I think he owes an apology to that woman. I think he owes an apology to the whole commission. And the county.”
KSHB-TV reported that Klemp was not elected to his role as commissioner but appointed by the Republican committee after another member resigned due to ill health. When approached by the news outlet, Klemp claimed his comment was meant as a joke.