Council candidate defends saying he would 'execute immigrants'
An Antrim council candidate has said that his comments were "tongue in cheek" after writing on social media that he would "apply for the job as executioner" if Donald Trump began killing immigrants.
Si Harvey is standing as a candidate for the Democrats and Veterans Party in Carrick Castle.
During a 2017 Facebook discussion when asked if he was calling Adolf Hitler or Trump a "legend", he replied "in a funny way both".
Mr Harvey told the Irish News that his comments were a "bit of a joke" and part of "sticking up for Donald Trump".
Alliance Carrick Castle candidate Lauren Gray said that the comments were "deeply offensive" and said they would "horrify" many people in Carrickfergus.
During the Facebook discussion Mr Harvey was asked "Would you still support Trump if immigrant executions start?".
"100%. I'd apply for the job as executioner," Mr Harvey replied.
The discussion centered around a German magazine cover which showed President Trump draped in a US flag and giving a Nazi salute.
Mr Harvey told the Irish News that he was not racist and did not support Hitler, he said the remarks were "a wind-up", though he did believe immigration should be limited.
He said that it was "ridiculous to compare Hitler with Trump".
"All I was doing was sticking up for Donald Trump," the veteran said.
"I would 100 per cent support Donald Trump. I think he has done an unbelievably fantastic job in America."
Mr Harvey said his execution comments were "tongue in cheek".
"Obviously it's not going to happen anyway because it wouldn't come to executions," he said.
The Democrats and Veterans candidate said that he "hated" Hitler and that he "was awful".
"I'm a veteran – why would I want to support Hitler?," Mr Harvey said.
Alliance's Mrs Gray said that the comments were "not remotely funny in any way, shape or form, and have no place in our society".
"Instead of Mr Harvey claiming these posts are a misguided attempt at humour, he needs to take a long, hard look at himself and apologise unreservedly for them," she said.
“Such prejudiced views are not welcome in Carrick or indeed anywhere else. I’m sure voters will make up their own minds after seeing them.”
Belfast Telegraph Digital