Politics & Policy

Rich Iott Lashes Out at Eric Cantor

This press release comes down the pike from the Iott Campaign in OH-9. Needless to say, it’s…well, not exactly diplomatic:

The Holocaust was an atrocity.  When people first starting hearing the stories, they didn’t believe them.  Who could do such a thing?  But as Germany was defeated, and reporters started to document the horrors of the death camps, the world came face to face with the evil perpetrated upon Jews.  We were disgusted and outraged and, since then, have focused on the phrase ‘never forget’  – as we should.  Especially today when Holocaust deniers include heads of nations, we must never, ever forget the abominations that were committed.

Military reenactments are one way to bring attention to the battles that were fought.  They are a historically accurate re-creation of various battles, complete with authentic dress and equipment. But they’re not just about the battles – they focus attention on the overall war and why it was fought in the first place.  Whether a participant or observer, we learn from these reenactments – and if we do not learn from history, we are doomed to repeat it.

Photos have surfaced of me in a German military uniform.  There has also been photos of me in American military uniforms from World War I and World War II and ones of me and my son in Civil War Union uniforms.  Also, I have made it clear in many occasions, that throughout my historical reenactments I have never meant any disrespect to those adversely affected by the tragedies of war, to veterans, or to the Jewish Community.

Of course, after the publication of the hit piece in Atlantic Monthly, my opponent piled on – repeating the warped perspective that one reporter presented without bothering to know the whole truth.  A lie of omission is still a lie and this was a deliberate character assassination.

More disappointing is the reaction of Congressman Eric Cantor, who didn’t seem to care about the facts, but only the self-serving politics of the moment.  While I expect my detractors to accept what they read from a biased media story as the entire story, I didn’t expect someone within my own party to be so completely disregarding of the truth, nor that they would take public positions without having all the facts – or at least trying to determine what the facts are.  I guess I should not be surprised that many career politicians – on both sides of the aisle – care more about potential political implications than the truth of an issue that got me involved in running for office in the first place.  Eric Cantor showed me yesterday that he is less concerned about truth or helping Republicans win elections and more concerned with his own image.  His uninformed words yesterday sum up why I originally entered this race as an independent.

I am running to represent the people of the 9th Congressional District – not a political party.  I will be doing the best service to my party when I do the best service to my constituents by standing up for what is right and standing against what is wrong – regardless of who is standing with, or against, me.  In the end, the truth will win out.

I knew when I entered this race that entrenched politicians who care more about power than true representation would work against me with all kinds of wild accusations and lies.  These types of attacks are part of the reason why good people don’t bother to get involved in running for office.  They’re also why too many people have such a negative view of politicians.

Throughout the campaign, I’ve focused on the issues.  I’ve done exactly what Marcy Kaptur said in her first campaign that we should all do – pay attention to how a person votes when they go to Washington.  I’ve highlighted her voting record and stated how I would have voted differently.  I’ve highlighted the differences in philosophy we have when it comes to the proper role of the federal government and I’ve talked about my experience running everything from a small start-up company to a multi-million dollar chain.  I’ve talked about how my experience as a person who has actually created jobs gives me a perspective that is so needed today in Washington, especially with the state of the economy.

She has attacked me personally – first with lies about Food Town, and now regarding my participation in military reenactments.  That’s not what voters want to hear about.  Voters want to know what we’re going to do when we go to Washington and whether we’re going to vote to continue the failed policies that have been put in place over the past two years or whether we’re going to work to put this country back on the path our founders set us upon – the path of free markets, individual liberty, personal responsibility and limited government.

I have faith that the voters will judge the candidates in the race for the 9th Congressional District based upon the issues.

–          Rich Iott

Unless Iott performs really well at the debate tonight, he’s going to be in real trouble after this.


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