RIO RANCHO, N.M. (AP) — The founder of a group Cowboys for Trump who also serves as a New Mexico county commissioner is facing calls to resign after he metaphorically said in a video, “the only good Democrat is a dead Democrat.”
In the video posted Tuesday on social media, Republican Otero County Commissioner Couy Griffin said Democrats were anti-American and opposed to President Donald Trump.
“I’ve come to a place where I’ve come to the conclusion that the only good Democrat is a dead Democrat,” Griffin said in a video on the Cowboys for Trump Facebook and Twitter pages. The crowd at an unknown event began to cheer. It was not clear when it was recorded.
“I don’t say that in the physical sense, and I can already see where the videos getting edited where it says I want to go murder Democrats. No,” Griffin continued. “I say that in the political sense because the Democrat agenda and policy is anti-American right now.”
By late Tuesday, a clip of the first part of Griffin’s comments circulated among Democrats who called for him to resign from the county commission.
“The County Commissioner’s comment is despicable, indefensible, and un-American,” Democratic House Speaker Brian Egolf tweeted Tuesday. “He represents Rs, Ds, and Independents. He should immediately apologize and resign.”
State Democratic chairwoman Marg Elliston said Griffin’s comments had no place in political discourse.
“Commissioner Griffin should resign his position immediately,” she said in a statement. “It is also incumbent upon every single Republican holding or running for elected office in New Mexico to strongly denounce his comments and join our call for his resignation.”
Griffin told The Associated Press he was speaking about politically killing the Democratic progressive agenda and wasn’t inciting violence. “I absolutely don’t want to harm anybody,” Griffin said. “I don’t agree with the Democrat platform.”
Griffin said he would not resign because he felt he did nothing wrong.
The state auditor, who is a Democrat, said in October he was investigating a travel reimbursement to Griffin in his capacity as county commissioner and whether it violated state law.
Griffin traveled to Washington, D.C., in part to attend a Sept. 12 conference with representatives from Western states. A travel voucher listed a meeting with Trump as the reason for the expense.
Last month, a spokesman for Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham came under fire for comparing Republicans and small business owners who wanted to reopen the state after the coronavirus shutdown a “death cult.”
Tripp Stelnicki suggested in a tweet that a group that he did not name wanted to “accelerated illness & death” and said their opinions should not be published.
That tweet was quickly denounced by the state Republican Party.
Follow Russell Contreras on Twitter at http://twitter.com/russcontreras