Update from the Concord Monitor (3.15.11):
Eugenics lawmaker resigns
By Shira Schoenberg
State Rep. Martin Harty resigned yesterday, facing outrage from constituents, colleagues and strangers over comments he made endorsing eugenics for what he called "defective people."
Harty, a 91-year-old Republican from Barrington and first-term representative, submitted a hand-written letter of resignation to House Speaker William O'Brien.
"I was just getting the hang of it some, but with all the slightly unfavorable publicity I've been getting the last few days I'll never be an effective lawmaker," Harty wrote. "Sorry my big mouth caused this furor."
O'Brien said Harty came to his office to personally offer his resignation. The resignation will become official today, and a special election will be held to fill his seat...
...Party leaders from both sides of the aisle cheered the announcement...
From the Concord Monitor (3.11.11):
Lawmaker advocates eugenics
By Shira Schoenberg
A 91-year-old state representative told a constituent that he believes in eugenics and that the world would be better off without "defective people."
Barrington Republican Martin Harty told Sharon Omand, a Strafford resident who manages a community mental health program, that "the world is too populated" and there are "too many defective people," according to an e-mail account of the conversation by Omand. Asked what he meant, she said Harty clarified, "You know the mentally ill, the r#t@rded, people with physical disabilities and drug addictions - the defective people society would be better off without."
Harty confirmed to the Monitor that he made the comments to Omand. Harty told the Monitor the world population has increased dramatically, and "it's a very dangerous situation if it doubles again." Asked about people who are mentally ill, he asked, apparently referring to a lack of financial resources, "Can we afford to bring them through?"
Harty said nature has a way of "getting rid of stupid people," and "now we're saving everyone who gets born."...
Omand says Harty then stated, "I wish we had a Siberia so we could ship them all off to freeze to death and die and clean up the population."
Omand said Harty appeared to be serious. After Omand responded that his idea sounded like what Adolf Hitler did in World War II, Omand said Harty responded, "Hitler did something right, and I agree with (it)."
Harty told the Monitor he was "just kidding" about Siberia. He denied making the comment about Hitler and said it was Omand who brought up Hitler...
From the JFA Moderator:
It takes a lot to shock me, but this article did. To be fair, the rest of the article indicates that Harty may be developing age-related dementia or possibly alzheimer's disease, so most of my outrage is targeted toward the voters who gave him the power to decide to stop funding programs for PWDs and toward the other republican representatives who are more than willing to write off these horrifying statements.
If he were just a wacky retiree I might be more forgiving, but the fact is that he is casting votes that will determine if mental health programs are closed or how much of the state budget is allocated toward services for PWDs. I agree with Laura Brahlek who posted to the AAPD fan page, "Those committee members who work alongside this man should be embarrassed and urge him to quit his post for health reasons."
Call for his retirement:
Call Representative Harty at (603) 664-2620
Call Governor John Lynch at (603) 271-2121
Call the House Speaker William O'Brien at (603) 271-3661
Call the House Majority Leader at (603) 271-3665
Tell them "Representative Harty needs to retire."