A Democrat candidate for the Minnesota House of Representatives has dropped out of the race tweeting a message that appeared to be sympathetic with the Islamic State.
“ISIS isn’t necessarily evil. It is made up of people doing what they think is best for their community. Violence is not the answer, though,” Candidate Dan Kimmel tweeted Sunday.
Hours later, after an immense backlash including from Democrat House Speaker Paul Thissen, he closed his campaign, the Star Tribune reported.
Dan Kimmell’s comments do not reflect the opinions of membership of the House DFL caucus. We stand firmly against the evil that is ISIS.
— paulthissen (@paulthissen) November 15, 2015
“I’m folding up the campaign tent,” he told the Star Tribune. He added that his tweet “was not interpreted as I intended. It was so badly misinterpreted.” He posted another clarification to Twitter Sunday.
I deplore the evil acts of ISIS. I do not defend their acts. — Dan Kimmel (@KimmelDan) November 15, 2015
His explained himself further on his campaign website.
My tweet last evening was in response to a statement made during the candidate debates, not in response to the activities in Paris. It was poorly worded and did not convey my intent.
I do think the attacks in Paris yesterday, along with other ISIS terrorist actions, are cowardly and despicable. My heart breaks for the people of France, of Paris, the families of those wounded or killed and the casualties themselves. My thoughts are with them. I condemn the attacks, as I condemn all violence.
I am folding up my campaign tent. The campaign website and Facebook page will be down by this afternoon.
I apologize to the volunteers and contributors who have put so much time, effort and money into my campaign.
I am very sorry for “spreading ick” on other candidates and the DFL party. I will do everything I can to help resolve the issue: most likely the best thing for me to do is shut up. The tweet was stupid. I’m sorry.
The chair of the DFL Party, which stands for Democratic-Farmer-Labor and describes itself as “Effectively the state chapter of the US Democratic Party,” Ken Martin wrote in a statement that “the views … have no place in our party. On behalf of the Minnesota DFL, I strongly condemn his comments. I ask Dan Kimmel to apologize to all the families who have been torn apart by the terrorist organization and their senseless violence. … We shouldn’t be making excuses for this barbaric behavior.”
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