GOP Leaders Repudiate Candidate Pictured In Nazi Regalia

As I noted yesterday, Rich Iott, a Republican running in Ohio’s 9th Congressional District against long-time Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur got himself in trouble when photos were made public of him wearing the uniform of a notorious SS Panzer Division as part of a World War Two reenactment group.

This morning, the number two Republican in the House pretty much threw Iott under the bus:

House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said he would “repudiate” the GOP House candidate in Ohio who belongs to a Nazi war reenactment group.

Democrats have attacked Republican leaders for supporting Rich Iott, a candidate Ohio’s 9th district who takes part in World War II reenactments while wearing SS uniforms as if he’s a member of the Nazi military.

Cantor on “Fox News Sunday” said that he “would absolutely repudiate that and not support an individual to do something like that.”

“You know good and well I don’t support anything like that,” added Cantor, who is Jewish.

Last night, Iott’s name and information were removed from the National Republican Congressional Committee’s “Young Guns” website as well.

Iott is running in a district that both Charlie Cook and The Rothenberg Report  list as Solid Democratic, so it’s unlikely he would’ve won anyway. Obviously, however, the GOP doesn’t want him associated with candidates who might actually have a shot at unseating Democratic incumbents.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2010, Quick Takes, US Politics
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. What I found amazing about this story was the number of people (Ann Althouse and Dan Riehl are two that come to mind from reading yesterday) who were willing to defend being part of group who wants to reenact the actions of the SS. At a minimum one would like to think that regardless of party affiliation that perhaps such behavior would give one pause rather than resulting in knee-jerk support and rantings about the liberal press being unfair.

  2. Bonnie_ says:

    Remember in the movie “The Pacifier” when Vin Diesel follows the “bad son” to a theatre to find that his Nazi-seeing attitudes were all a part of being in a performance of “The Sound of Music”?

    Tom Cruise wore the Nazi uniform in a movie. He’s eeeevil! He must be shunned! Who played Hitler in that movie that keeps getting spoofed on YouTube? Let’s hunt him down and hang him. He put on the uniform, after all, and pretended to be Hitler.

    I hope, fervently, for the day when people are ashamed to admit they were Democrats. I hope they burn their family photos that show them wearing Democratic buttons and attending Democratic events. I hope for that day.

  3. Brummagem Joe says:

    “rather than resulting in knee-jerk support and rantings about the liberal press being unfair.”

    Knee jerks on the right over this sort of stuff are de rigeur

  4. wr says:

    Umm, Bonnie? Those people who are so quick to distance himself from that guy? Republicans. Read the post again. Republicans, not Democrats.

  5. Brummagem Joe says:

    “Tom Cruise wore the Nazi uniform in a movie. He’s eeeevil!”

    Perhaps you’d like to give us a link to where anyone said Cruise was evil for wearing a Nazi uniform in a movie? And you obviously don’t know that the “Nazi” concerned was Colonel Claus Schenk von Stauffenberg a hero of anti Nazi resistance to Hitler. I hope for the day when guys like you acquire some self respect.

  6. Bonnie_ says:

    Don’t you understand that this person wore the Nazi uniform in a re-enactment? Not to a costume party, not as a member of some secret cult, but just like Tom Cruise, or any teenager who was cast in the Sound of Music. Of course you don’t, because if you did understand you’d be a conservative and not a leftist. So I guess, never mind then.

    Of course Republicans are quick to “distance themselves” from this candidate and who cares if he’s innocent. The race card was used successfully for years to panic any Republican who didn’t want to get torn apart in a media feeding frenzy. Obama can have a poster of Che Guevera in his campaign staffer’s offices, but heaven help any Southern candidate who might be seen with the Confederate flag in the background of any photo, for example.

    We’re seeing a change in the paradigm, and this story is the last dying echo of leftist group-speak. Thank goodness for that.

  7. Bonnie,

    The recruitment video for the group Iott belonged to included the following statement:

    “National Socialism was seen by many in Holland, Denmark, Norway, Finland, and other eastern European and Balkan countries as the protector of personal freedom and their very way of life, despite the true underlying totalitarian (and quite twisted, in most cases) nature of the movement. Regardless, thousands upon thousands of valiant men died defending their respective countries in the name of a better tomorrow. We salute these idealists; no matter how unsavory the Nazi government was, the front-line soldiers of the Waffen-SS (in particular the foreign volunteers) gave their lives for their loved ones and a basic desire to be free.”

    They aren’t just role playing, they are saluting the virtue of the Wafen-SS unit which

    The actual Wiking unit has a history as grisly as that of other Nazi divisions. In her book “The Death Marches of Hungarian Jews Through Austria in the Spring of 1945,” Eleonore Lappin, the noted Austrian historian, writes that soldiers from the Wiking division were involved in the killing of Hungarian Jews in March and April 1945, before surrendering to American forces in Austria.

    Iott was quoted as saying: “Part of the reenactor’s [experience] is the living-history part, of really trying to get into the persona of the time period.”

    This is not just war-gaming, it is the glorification of war criminals. Not exactly good for one’s resume if one is running for congress.

    Source: click.

  8. Brummagem Joe says:

    “This is not just war-gaming, it is the glorification of war criminals. Not exactly good for one’s resume if one is running for congress.”

    Perhaps it’s on Bonnie’s resume. Tell me Steve when you read stuff like this do you think its’ some kind of joke. I know America’s full of odd people but some of this stuff is surreal. Ah well

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UkhisRY3RRQ

  9. michael reynolds says:

    So many, many bits of history that one might choose to re-enact. Thousands of years of human history, thousands of nations, groups, tribes. Could have dressed up like wartime RAF. But, no. Could have dressed up like a soldier in the Colonial army. And . . . no. How about a Hebrew marching around Jericho? Or a Spartan? A Marine on Iwo Jima? Or a knight at the gates of Vienna, even. They had fabulous outfits.

    Nope.

    Had to go with Waffen SS.

  10. Brummagem Joe says:

    “Had to go with Waffen SS.”

    Well the uniforms were rather smart Michael. In fact it’s this sense of theater which accounts for much of the fascination with the Nazis. The regalia, uniforms, torchlight parades, stirring songs (the Horst Wessel is a great song), march pasts, film, art, Mercedes cars, rallies, etc etc. There are a lot of books on Nazi iconography a particularly good one is Weekend in Munich which deals with the opening of the museum of German art where the entire city was swept up in preparations, street decorations, tableaux, etc. Nazi art is much reviled but more for political than artistic reasons probably. Their poster art is very good as is much of their architecture.

  11. Juneau: says:

    @ Brummagen

    And you obviously don’t know that the “Nazi” concerned was Colonel Claus Schenk von Stauffenberg a hero of anti Nazi resistance to Hitler.

    He was a GOOD Nazi, so in the end so he doesn’t count, right? Like a good liberal you ignore the reductio absurdum point of the comment and move on to justifying why its OK to play SOME Nazis in a movie. But only GOOD ones… Imaginary ones are absolutely beyond the pale.

    Cotton-candy grey matter between the ears is the most accurate model for the inner workings of a liberal’s mind.

  12. Juneau: says:

    Damn, you Progs are getting desperate for “dirt.” And the mid-terms are still three weeks away. This is getting to be a lot of fun…

  13. anjin-san says:

    Juneau, since we are on to acting, why don’t you tell us again how all actors can do is pretend to be other people? Cotton candy between the ears would be a serious upgrade in your case 🙂

  14. Brummagem Joe says:

    anjin-san says:
    Sunday, October 10, 2010 at 20:26

    The perception and artistic judgement of these film critics has to be seen to be believed.

  15. Juneau: says:

    @ anjin

    Juneau, since we are on to acting, why don’t you tell us again how all actors can do is pretend to be other people?

    OK, here you go. ” All actors do is pretend to be other people.” Happy? By the way, that’s why its called ACTING.

    At least you’re easily mollified, you must be mellowing in your dotage.

  16. anjin-san says:

    > All actors do is pretend to be other people.” Happy? By the way, that’s why its called ACTING.

    Nice editing. You left out the word “can”. It’s ok, if I had ever engaged in a rant like the one you did on that thread I would be trying to rewrite history too. I mean not knowing Paul Newman was a raging liberal AND referring to him in the present tense in the same sentence? You made it into the dim bulb hall of fame right there without the traditional 5 year waiting period. Do you get free tea party membership when you do that?

  17. Juneau says:

    @ anjin

    …AND referring to him in the present tense in the same sentence?

    I guess that qualifies me to be the Senate majority leader, eh? When asked who his two favorite living people are Harry Reid replies – “My two favorite living people are (then proceeds to name two individuals who are dead).”

    So anjin, I’m glad to see that you feel Harry Reid is stupid. Good thing is, the people of Nevada appear to agree with you and that’s why Angle is now about 6 points ahead in the polls. You know, the Sharon Angle loved and admired so much by yourself and Mataconis?Word is, Reid is in full panic mode.

    You might want to follow his lead…

  18. wr says:

    Just out of curiousity, Juneau, when you say “Word is, Reid is in full panic mode,” which of Reid’s close personal advisors have told you this? Or are you just repeating crap from right wing hacks again?

  19. Juneau says:

    @ wr

    Don’t worry. Just sit back and relax; everything is going to be just fine…

  20. sam says:

    ” Good thing is, the people of Nevada appear to agree with you and that’s why Angle is now about 6 points ahead in the polls.”

    Pollster has them dead even (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/03/05/10-nv-sen-ge-avr_n_727027.html)

  21. sam says:

    “He was a GOOD Nazi, so in the end so he doesn’t count, right?”

    Von Stauffenberg was not a Nazi. He was a colonel in the Wehrmacht, not the SS.

  22. Juneau: says:

    @ sam

    Von Stauffenberg was not a Nazi. He was a colonel in the Wehrmacht, not the SS.

    Sam, the term “Nazi” related to political affiliation and had nothing to do with the branch of service a German was serving in. I know the difference between the traditional German Army (Wermacht) and Hitler’s Shutzstaffel (SS). This difference had absolutely nothing to do with being a “Nazi” and as a general staff officer Von Stauffenberg was most certainly a party member.

    Your statement is the equivalent of saying that a Navy admiral is not a Democrat because he is not in the Marine Corps. Political affiliation has nothing to do with the branch of armed services you serve in.

  23. sam says:

    …as a general staff officer Von Stauffenberg was most certainly a party member.

    Although Stauffenberg agreed with some of the Nazi Party’s nationalistic aspects, he found many aspects of its ideology repugnant and never became a member of the party. Moreover, Stauffenberg remained a practicing Catholic. The Catholic Church had signed the Reichskonkordat in 1933, the year Hitler and the Nazi Party came to power. Stauffenberg vacillated between a strong personal dislike of Hitler’s policies and a respect for what he perceived to be Hitler’s military acumen. On top of this, the growing systematic ill-treatment of Jews and suppression of religion had offended Stauffenberg’s strong personal sense of Catholic religious morality and justice.[10][11]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Claus_Schenk_Graf_von_Stauffenberg

  24. Brummagem Joe says:

    I don’t think Stauffenberg was a member of the party. Many senior officers in the Wehrmacht were not and and party membership was not a requirement in the army until very late in the war. He was however, like most of the July plotters a fervent nationalist and had they succeeded and become the German govt there is no way the allies would have accepted their war aims which essentialy amounted to a return to the 1939 borders. This is the main reason the western allies gave them a wide berth. Stalin was suspicious enough, they didn’t want to stoke his distrust any further. The July plotters were all incredibly brave men but most of them (including Stauffenberg) were fairly enthusiastic supporters of Hitler until things started to go wrong. This accounts for much of the ambivalence with which they are still regarded in Germany.

  25. Juneau: says:

    @ sam

    I see your source quote , and would like to point out that :

    1) My main point was that your assumption that a member of the Wermacht would not be a Nazi was presumptuous since the branch of service had nothing to do with Nazi party affiliation, and

    2) I did not state that Stauffenberg was a Nazi. I said that as a general staff officer he was most certainly a party member. You made a good catch, because what I should have said – which would have accurately relayed my intent – was that Von Stauffenberg was “almost” certainly a party member

    Nonetheless, I didn’t put it correctly and you made a good catch.