Zinke Says 'Konnichiwa' When Congresswoman Asks About US Internment Camps - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Zinke Says 'Konnichiwa' When Congresswoman Asks About US Internment Camps

Rep. Judy Chu, D-Calif, called the interior secretary's choice of words "outrageous" and demanded he apologize



    Under the Tucson Sun
    Win McNamee/Getty Images, File
    This March 13, 2018, file photo shows Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke testify before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee in Washington, D.C.

    Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said "konnichiwa" when asked at a Thursday morning congressional hearing about a grant program that funds the preservation of Japanese-American incarceration sites, a remark some lawmakers have called "juvenile" and "outrageous," NBC News reported.

    Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, D-Hawaii, whose grandfathers were interned during World War II, asked Zinke if he would commit to continuing the grants, and Zinke replied, "Oh, konnichiwa," before going on to answer the question.

    "Konnichiwa" means good afternoon, and Hanabusa corrected him by saying, "I think it's still 'ohayo gozaimasu,' but that's OK."

    But other lawmakers were much more critical. Rep. Judy Chu, D-Calif, called Zinke's way of greeting Hanabusa "outrageous" and demanded he apologize.

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