Harry Reid Apologizes for Comments Stereotyping Asians

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., talks to reporters in his Reno, Nev. office on Monday, Aug. 18, 2014. He said he doesn't intend to waste his time raising money for Democrat Bob Goodman in an unlikely bid to unseat popular Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval in November. AP

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Senator Harry Reid has issued an apology after making two jokes stereotyping Asians during an event in Las Vegas.

Speaking before the Las Vegas Asian Chamber of Commerce on Thursday, the Senate majority leader jokingly told the audience: "I don’t think you’re smarter than anybody else, but you’ve convinced a lot of us you are.”

A video of Reid’s speech - which was recorded by the Republican opposition group America Rising and sent to reporters - shows that many in the audience laughed at the joke. A bit later on in his remarks, Reid also cracked that “one problem that I’ve had today is keeping my Wongs straight.”

Reid released a statement on Friday apologizes for the jokes, saying, "my comments were in extremely poor taste and I apologize. Sometimes I say the wrong thing."

According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the organization decided to endorse Republican Mark Hutchison in the state’s Lieutenant Governor’s race over Democrat Lucy Flores, who has been backed by Reid.


-- Lakshmi Gandhi