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9 Most Controversial Moments and Statements by Maxine Waters

Maxine Waters: Impeach Trump

Maxine Waters: Maxine Waters, the fiery Congresswoman representing California’s 43rd district, is no stranger to controversy. Throughout her long career, her outspoken nature and unapologetic stance on progressive issues have garnered both passionate support and fierce criticism. Here are 9 of her most controversial moments and statements:

1. Impeach Trump!: Maxine Waters

Waters was one of the first and most vocal advocates for impeaching President Donald Trump, a call she began even before he took office. Her relentless pursuit of impeachment proceedings, often delivered in her signature booming voice, made her a symbol of resistance for many Democrats. However, critics accused her of being overly partisan and fueling political divisions.

Maxine Waters: Impeach Trump

2. “Reclaiming My Time” Silences Treasury Secretary Mnuchin.

During a House Financial Services Committee hearing in 2017, Waters repeatedly interrupted Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin as he attempted to answer questions about the Trump administration’s economic policies. Her now-iconic chant, “Reclaiming my time!” went viral, showcasing her confrontational style and drawing both praise for holding power accountable and criticism for disrespecting decorum.

3. Calling for Trump Supporters to be “Confronted”: Maxine Waters

In 2018, Waters made a statement urging her supporters to confront Trump administration officials whenever they saw them in public, saying, “If you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, you have to push back on them.” Republicans condemned her remarks as inciting violence, while her supporters defended her right to free speech and argued that Trump officials deserved public criticism for their policies.

Maxine Waters speaking

4. Supporting the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) Movement:

Waters is a vocal supporter of the BDS movement, which advocates for boycotts, divestment, and sanctions against Israel over its occupation of Palestinian territories. This stance has drawn fire from pro-Israel groups, who accuse her of anti-Semitism and harming efforts to achieve peace in the region. Waters maintains that she supports a two-state solution and criticizes Israeli human rights abuses.

5. “He Got Elected”: Maxine Waters

In 2016, after Trump’s election victory, Waters sparked outrage with a comment suggesting that some African Americans did not vote because they believed his victory was impossible. Critics accused her of disenfranchising Black voters and diminishing their agency. Waters later apologized for her remarks, clarifying that she intended to highlight the importance of voter turnout.

6. “Gangster Capitalism”:

Waters has frequently used strong language to criticize Wall Street and corporate America. In 2008, she referred to the financial system as “gangster capitalism” during the mortgage crisis, drawing accusations of demonizing capitalism and contributing to market instability. However, her supporters applauded her for speaking truth to power and holding financial institutions accountable for their actions.

Maxine Waters

7. Linking Trump to Russia: Maxine Waters

Waters was among the first Democrats to raise concerns about possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election. Though her claims were initially dismissed by some, they gained credence as the Mueller investigation unfolded. While some criticized her for jumping to conclusions, others commended her for recognizing the seriousness of the potential threat.

8. “Escort” Trump out of Office:

In 2019, Waters called for Trump to be “escorted out of the White House” if he refused to comply with a congressional subpoena. This statement was widely condemned by Republicans as inciting violence and disrespecting the office of the presidency. However, Waters defended her remarks, arguing that Trump’s obstruction of justice warranted decisive action.

9. Defending Ilhan Omar:

Waters has been a staunch defender of fellow progressive Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, who has faced accusations of anti-Semitism for her past criticisms of Israel. When Omar was censured by the House for some of her remarks, Waters criticized the move as a politically motivated attack on progressive women of color. Her stance highlighted the ongoing debate about free speech, anti-Semitism, and accountability within the Democratic Party.

Maxine Waters’s words and actions have consistently provoked strong reactions, both positive and negative. Her supporters admire her for her unwavering commitment to progressive values, her willingness to speak truth to power, and her unapologetic defense of the marginalized. Her critics, however, see her as a polarizing figure who often resorts to inflammatory rhetoric and undermines political discourse. Regardless of one’s stance, there’s no denying that Maxine Waters is a powerful force in American politics, a woman who refuses to be silenced, and whose every word is guaranteed to spark debate.