Over the past two years, and particularly last fall, the rhetoric coming from Republican opponents of the Affordable Care Act (AKA "Obamacare") has been rather heated. Opposition to the new healthcare law is one of the main issues Republicans are campaigning on for next year's midterm elections, and conservatives across the U.S. have derided Obamacare with ferocity, even going so far as to shut down the U.S. government in protest. As heated as things have gotten, however, Republicans have been tactful enough not to bring Nazis into it - until now.
Tennessee state Senator Stacey Campfield this week posted a provocative "Thought of the Day" to his public blog. In it, he directly compared Obamacare to the holocaust:
Democrats bragging about the number of mandatory sign ups for Obamacare is like Germans bragging about the number of manditory sign ups for "train rides" for Jews in the 40s.
The comparision, of course, caused an outcry in political circles, cable news channels, and on social media:
Stacey Campfield is the buzzing noise behind the wall that hides the hive of crazy that is the modern #GOP. He is the window to their soul.
— Jeff Crook (@JeffCrook2b) May 6, 2014
— Cindy (@cindymindy) May 6, 2014
If West Knoxville can't do better than Stacey Campfield, we should start calling ourselves Outer Corryton.
— Kent Johnson (@37919KJ) May 6, 2014
I am ready for Stacey Campfield to fall down a mine shaft.
— The Nashvillian (@TheNashvillian) May 5, 2014
In the midst of the criticism, Campfield replied to his own blog post to clarify, but not apologize, for his comment. He characterized his post as a warning against "the continued taking of freedom by the federal government" and stated that he regrets "that some people miss the point of my post." Campfield wrote that he "will continue to support freedom and life," citing "the slippery slope" and "government funded abortion" in his post.
Campfield is no stranger to controversy. He is the same politician who in in 2012 made headlines for his belief that the origin of AIDS was "one guy screwing a monkey." In the past Campfield has sponsored legislation including a bill to issue death certificates to aborted fetuses and a bill to ban public school teachers from mentioning homosexuality in the classroom.
Image via Tennessee