CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice has offered a conditional apology for calling a high school girls basketball team “thugs,” saying he didn’t know the remarks would cause any trouble.
The Republican governor on Friday told WCHS-TV he was sorry if he did anything to offend the team.
He made the remarks after a scuffle broke out at a heated Tuesday night game between Greenbrier East High School, where he coaches, and Woodrow Wilson High School.
The team’s coaches are black, as are some of the players. Some lawmakers have said the term has racial connotations.
Justice says it’s absurd to accuse him of making a racial slur.
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