The Buffalo School Board voted Thursday to force fellow member Carl Paladino to resign after he made overtly racist comments about President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama.
Paladino, who served as the co-chair of President-elect Donald Trump's New York campaign, wrote in a racist tirade last week that he hoped Obama would die of "mad cow disease" and for the first lady "to return to being a male and let loose in the outback of Zimbabwe where she lives comfortably in a cave with Maxie, the gorilla."
Paladino has since semi-apologized for his words, saying he's not racist and that he never intended for the public to see the comments he wrote.
But that semi-apology wasn't good enough for the Buffalo School Board, on which Paladino serves, which voted 6-2 to tell him to resign within 24 hours, according to the Buffalo News.
"Words matter, Mr. Paladino," School Board President Barbara Seals Nevergold said in an impassioned speech during the vote. "Our president, the Commander in Chief of this nation for the last eight years, Mrs. Obama, our first lady and Valerie Jarrett, special presidential council. are all African-Americans. Among other things, they are accomplished, intelligent, beautiful people and that's not just my opinion."
Protesters gathered outside Buffalo City Hall Thursday to call for Paladino's ouster.
Many carried signs with the hashtag #CanCarl
Since the Buffalo School Board opted not to vote to remove Paladino outright, it is now up to State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia to decide whether or not Paladino should go, the Buffalo News reported.