We demand formal censure against Rep. Scalese for stealing the voice of activist Ady Barkan.

For those who’ve missed this, in the original video, Ady Barkan asks Biden about what could be done about police violence. “We can reduce the responsibilities assigned to the police and redirect some of the funding for police into mental health counseling, and affordable housing,” he says. Barkan later asks “do we agree that we can redirect some of the funding?” to which Biden responds, “yes.”

House Minority Whip Scalise edited the clip by adding the words “for police,” at the end of that question, making it appear that Barkan is asking Biden to defund police completely, a position Biden has said he does not support. Barkan believes that “Scalise’s team just went the extra mile in seeming to find the exact voice generator I use when they whipped up the extra words meant to damn Biden.” Creepy, ugly and so on-brand for the GOP – hijacking the voice of a man who struggles for each word.

The House of Representatives Ethics Committee announced earlier this year that members who share “deep fakes or other audio-visual distortions intended to mislead the public” could be in violation of the House’s Code of Official Conduct. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) tweeted Sunday that Scalisemust take down the doctored video and apologize immediately.” The House Democratic campaign arm has filed a formal ethics complaint against Scalise, who also maintain he used public resources to make his video. We want more than his current denial and non-apology – Scalise should undergo “censure” for conduct unbecoming a human being, much less an elected official, and receive a formal verbal rebuke.

Minimal script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Rep. [___] to move to censure Rep. Steve Scalise for his disgraceful actions in stealing Mr. Barkan’s voice and reputation.

Learn more about the Movement for Black Lives hereMore information about Black August here. Sign their petition here.