GOP Club criticized over Obama-O.J. slogan

July 9, 2008 12:11:07 PM PDT
A local Republican Club in New Jersey has removed a slogan from its Web site that read, "Obama loves America like O.J. loved Nicole." The Pemberton Republican Club had posted the slogan that referenced NFL Hall of Famer O.J. Simpson, who was acquitted in the 1994 murders of his former wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ron Goldman.

Todd Riffle, spokesman for the New Jersey Republican State Committee, said the state party isn't tied to local Republican clubs.

The Pemberton Republican Club removed the slogan after Democrats alleged racist campaign tactics.

The club's Web master, Ed Kuck, didn't respond to a message left at his home but told The Philadelphia Inquirer that he saw the slogan on an Internet site and copied it onto the club's Web page as a joke.

"I just want to apologize to anybody who was offended, because that wasn't our intention at all," Kuck told the newspaper.

Richard Perr, chairman of the Burlington County Democratic Committee, decried the slogan.

"Comparing Barack Obama to O.J. Simpson, an accused murderer who was found civilly liable for his ex-wife's death, is reprehensible," Perr said. "Moreover, it is a veiled attempt at inserting race into the political arena for which the Republicans should be ashamed."