The chairman of the Republican Party in Texas's Harris County has resigned after months of controversy for his racist Facebook post in which he implied that Martin Luther King, Jr. was a monkey.
The Houston Chronicle reports that Nielsen stepped down after having been "dogged by his social media post that displayed a Martin Luther King Jr. quote next to a banana."
Nielsen was heavily criticized by fellow Republicans for the post, which came in the wake of George Floyd's killing by Minneapolis police officers, and he initially said that he would not take over as Harris County GOP chairman before reversing himself shortly afterward.
At the time of the post, Nielsen claimed he had "zero malicious intent" behind it and he didn't intend to offend anyone.
“I wanted to speak out against the ensuing violence, burning and looting of small businesses across the nation, I simply wanted to say that it’s bananas to act this way and that peaceful protesters have shown us a better way forward,” Nielsen said at the time. “I grew up in a home where saying ‘bananas’ instead of curse words kept us from being punished, but I am not afraid to confront and challenge long-held manners of belief and speech.”