U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, who’s been getting a lot of media attention since her starring role at a D.C. rally against the House health reform bill last week, has been distancing herself from the Holocaust imagery displayed by some of the participants in the event.
"Sadly, some individuals chose to marginalize tragic events in human history, such as the Holocaust, by invoking imagery and labels which have no purpose in a policy debate about health care," the Minnesota Republican said in a statement she has been sending out to reporters in recent days.
"These regrettable actions negatively shift the focus of the current discussion on this issue,” her statement continues. “The American people deserve an open and honest debate to ensure the best possible solution to our health care problems, and I agree that these unfortunate instances are wholly inappropriate."
Bachmann’s statement comes after U.S. Rep. Steve Israel, a Jewish Democrat from Long Island, called on her to apologize for the offending images at the Capitol Hill rally, which she’s been largely credited with inspiring and organizing.
In a YouTube video last week, Israel said, “I can’t believe that Congresswoman Bachmann would stand where she stood, and see those images, and not have the common decency to say ‘I disagree with those images.’”
One of the signs, bearing images of Holocaust victims, read “National Socialist Healthcare, Dachau, German, 1945.”
Bachmann also sent a letter to the Jewish Community Relations Council expressing her regrets.