Hours after Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-Ohio) tweeted that Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) told her to "kiss my a--" after she asked him to put a mask on while they boarded a train in the Capitol subway system, he apologized, telling CNN, "My words were not acceptable."
Beatty, chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, shared on Twitter Tuesday morning that the incident took place while they were heading to the House floor for votes. Following her request, Rogers "poked my back, demanding I get on the train," Beatty wrote. "When I asked him not to touch me, he responded, 'Kiss my a--.'"
"This is the kind of disrespect we have been fighting for years, and indicative of the larger issue we have with GOP members flaunting health and safety mandates designed to keep us and our staff safe," Beatty continued. "@RepHalRogers, when you are ready to grow up and apologize for your behavior, you know where to find me."
On Tuesday afternoon, CNN's Manu Raju tweeted that Rogers told him he "just apologized" to Beatty, and his "words were not acceptable." Raju later asked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) if Rogers' apology was good enough, and she replied that it was up to Beatty to decide that, adding, "As I say all the time here, if somebody makes a high-profile insult, they have to do a high-profile apology."
Since July, the House has had an indoor mask requirement for meetings in enclosed spaces.