W.Va. Candidate: Smoking Regs Like Hitler's Jewish Star


If you thought that the heated debate surrounding Boise's new anti-smoking ban was incendiary, meet John Raese. A Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in West Virginia, Raese is comparing his county's smoking ban to Adolf Hitler forcing Jews to wear the Star of David. Raese was railing against Monongalia County's recently enacted smoking ban as an example of government overreach.

"In Monongalia County now, I have to put a huge sticker on my buildings to say this is a smoke-free environment," said Raese. "Remember Hitler used to put Star of David on everybody’s lapel, remember that? Same thing."

Raese also referred to President Franklin D. Roosevelt as "Fidel Roosevelt" in the same speech.

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Raese is challenging former West Virginia Democratic Gov. Joe Machin for the U.S. Senate seat.

Raese joins a long list of politicians, both Republican and Democratic, who have chosen to compare Hitler's actions to cotemporary issues, including California Gov. Jerry Brown, Tennesee Rep. Steve Cohen, Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin and Florida Rep. Allen West.