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Washington State Senator Apologizes After 'Colored' Remark

Washington state Senator Jim Honeyford of Yakima
Washington Legislature
Washington state Senator Jim Honeyford of Yakima

Washington state Senator JimHoneyfordof Yakima has apologized after using the term “colored” to refer to people of color.

In a statement Thursday, the Republican lawmaker said he is “deeply sorry for the hurt” he has caused. The longtime senator made the comment during a committee hearing last week. He was defending a statement he’d made a few minutes earlier about the linkage between criminal activity and poverty and race.

“Poor more likely to commit crimes and colored most likely to be poor,” he said. “I didn’t say anything else on that. And I believe that’s an accepted fact if you check any of your sociology books or anything else you’ll find that’s an accepted fact in our society.”

Honeyford said he’s a 76-year-old man who “doesn’t always use language that is appropriate in 2015.” He’s served in the Washington Senate since 1998 and represents a mostly Latino district in central Washington.

Copyright 2015 Northwest News Network

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy as well as the Washington State legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia." Prior to joining the Northwest News Network, Austin worked as a television reporter in Seattle, Portland and Boise. Austin is a graduate of Garfield High School in Seattle and Connecticut College in New London, Connecticut. Austin’s reporting has been recognized with awards from the Association of Capitol Reporters and Editors, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated and the Society of Professional Journalists.
Austin Jenkins
Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."