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Rep. Green responds to racist threats: 'You have to confront hate'

Story highlights
  • Capitol Hill police acknowledged Monday they're investigating threats against Al Green
  • Several racist threats came in following calls Green made for Donald Trump's impeachment

Editor's Note: (WARNING: This story contains offensive language.)

(CNN) Rep. Al Green confirmed Monday that officials are investigating threats of lynching he's received since he called for President Donald Trump's impeachment.

"We are hopeful there will be a prosecution," the Texas Democrat told CNN's Brooke Baldwin. "Lynching is murder. People make these threats and we need to expose them."

Green -- who is black -- played recordings at a town hall on Saturday of explicit, racially-charged voicemails he received following his call to impeach Trump.

The lawmaker said while it was not an easy decision to share the threats he received, it was a "necessary one."

"You cannot hide hate," he said on CNN. "You have to confront hate. ... It's unfortunate many African-Americans have to live knowing they can be threatened with lynching."

Green delivered extended remarks on the floor of the House of Representatives last Wednesday urging his colleagues to begin impeachment proceedings following the revelation that former FBI Director James Comey wrote in a memo that Trump had asked Comey to end his investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Capitol Hill police acknowledged they were investigating but declined to comment to CNN on the details of the threats with a spokeswoman saying "we do not comment on ongoing investigations."

RELATED: A running list of Democrats who have discussed impeachment

During the town hall, held in Houston, Texas, over the weekend, Green shared the audio. Democratic strategist Mustafa Tameez shared video from the event:

"You're not going to impeach anybody, you f*****g n****r," said one caller. "You'll be hanging from a tree. I didn't see anybody calling for the impeachment of your n****r Obama. He was born in Kenya, he's not even an American. So, f**k you, n****r."

"We're actually going to give you a short trial before we hang your n****r ass," said another.

"You can decide for yourself what we are dealing with," Green told the town hall crowd, saying there was another message he was "not playing at this time."

Green said it is important to combat hate.

"We're going to stay the course," he said. "If we don't fight them (those who made threats), hate rules. And if hate rules, we lose our democracy."

CNN's Deirdre Walsh contributed to this report.