Rep. Tom Hackbarth: Unions = communists, Castro, Hitler?

“Are you a Union member?  If so, are they the communist giving you this propaganda?” That was part of the response by Minnesota Republican Representative Tom Hackbarth to a letter from a constituent asking him to “ask the most fortunate among us to pay their fair share” rather than “inflict severe pain on the middle-class and vulnerable Minnesotans.” (Full copy of the correspondence between the union member, Hackbarth, and Cody below.)

Hackbarth, you may recall, is the 8th-term legislator who was “stopped and handcuffed by police in the parking lot of a St. Paul Planned Parented in mid-November after he was spotted with a gun in his waistband.” (Hackbarth may have been looking for a woman with whom he had an on-line relationship—or an in-person relationship—depending on which version of the ensuing stories you believe.)

The union member who sent a letter to Hackbarth forwarded his response to the Minnesota Association of Professional Employees. MAPE Executive Director Jim Monroe responded, in part, “Do you really believe that when our members ask you to protect 140,000 Minnesotans from losing their MnCare benefits rather than having the richest two percent of Minnesotans paying their fair share of taxes it compares to the rise of Hitler and targeting the Jews?   When did supporting public services for battered women, crime victims and students in public universities become a fascist notion?”

Monroe said he was deeply troubled by Hackbarth’s response. We should all be deeply troubled by the failure of civility, but also by the failure of competence and conscience that lead to the current sorry proposals to strip protection and support from the most vulnerable Minnesotans.

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

EMAIL FROM ROBIN SEIFERT TO REPRESENTATIVE HACKBARTH

>>> Robin Seifert <email address redacted> 6/9/2011 4:25 PM >>>

Jun 9, 2011

Representative Tom Hackbarth
State Office Building, Room 409
100 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard St. Paul, MN 55155

Dear Representative Hackbarth,

You have a choice. As a legislators, you could chose to ask the most fortunate among us to pay their fair share or you could inflict severe pain on the middle-class and vulnerable Minnesotans.

I oppose the all-cuts budget which will increase property taxes on homeowners, renters and small businesses by more than one billion dollars.
The all-cuts plan will eliminate support for battered women and crime victims and slash funding for public universities by $411 million.

We have a choice. We can either protect the richest Minnesotans and large corporations or we can protect the vital services that average Minnesotans depend on.

Are you willing to take away health care from 140,000 Minnesotans just to protect the 40,000 richest people in Minnesota?

I also support the Viking stadium they are part of Minnesota and need to stay here.  We have waited to long to get a stadium they time is now!!

Please tax the richest 2% of Minnesotans. Ask them to pay their fair share.

Sincerely,

Ms. Robin Seifert

 

RESPONSE FROM REPRESENTATIVE HACKBARTH TO ROBIN SEIFERT

From: Tom Hackbarth [mailto:rep.tom.hackbarth@house.mn]
Sent: Thursday, June 09, 2011 10:14 PM
To: Robin Seifert
Subject: Re: Stand up for the middle class

Robin,

I can’t believe what I’m hearing from folks?  All, similar letters to yours.
Are you a Union member?  If so, are they the communist giving you this propaganda?

Do you know the who, what, when, where, why, and how, of Fidel Castro?
Hitler rose to power using and blaming the jews for the destruction of the German economy.  Castro built his army of murderers by blaming the rich bankers and capitalist for destroying Cuba and taking advantage of the Cuban people.  Hummmm?

Representative Hackbarth

Rep. Tom Hackbarth
100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
St. Paul, MN 55155
Office: 651-296-2439 Fax: 651-296-3918

To subscribe to my email update go to: http://www.house.mn/48A

LETTER FROM MAPE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR JAMES MONROE TO HACKBARTH
June 13, 2011

Representative Tom Hackbarth
100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
Saint Paul, Minnesota  55155

Sent via email and by U.S. Postal Service

Dear Representative Hackbarth,

I received a copy of an email that you sent to one of my members, Robin Seifert, in regards to her membership in the union I represent.  While I appreciate your willingness to respond to your constituents, I am deeply troubled about what you wrote and ask you to shed light onto linking a public employee union with the rise of Adolph Hitler and murderous armies of Fidel Castro.

I would appreciate you clarifying your statement to our member on June 9, 2011, at 10:14 pm:
“Robin,

I can’t believe what I’m hearing from folks?  All, similar letters to yours.
Are you a Union member?  If so, are they the communist giving you this propaganda?

Do you know the who, what, when, where, why, and how, of Fidel Castro?
Hitler rose to power using and blaming the jews for the destruction of the German economy.  Castro built his army of murderers by blaming the rich bankers and capitalist for destroying Cuba and taking advantage of the Cuban people.  Hummmm?

Representative Hackbarth”
Representative Hackbarth, do you really equate advocating for the middle class and Minnesota’s vulnerable citizens as communist propaganda?   Do you really believe that when our members ask you to protect 140,000 Minnesotans from losing their MnCare benefits rather than having the richest two percent of Minnesotans paying their fair share of taxes it compares to the rise of Hitler and targeting the Jews?   When did supporting public services for battered women, crime victims and students in public universities become a fascist notion?

When did humanity and caring for our neighbors and asking for millionaires to pay their fair share become supporting Fidel Castro and his murderous armies?

As I am sure you would agree, we are lucky to live in a free society.  But with the freedom of expression, comes the responsibility of explaining oneself.    I ask that you please explain to me the basis of your email response to a hard working public employee who wants to work for Minnesota, is proud to serve this state and is worried about what an all-cuts budget will do to her family and the rest of the middle class.

We are not asking you to agree with everything, but you were elected to serve all your constituents and listen to their concerns respectfully without denigrating their ideas.
Please remember that their hard earned tax dollars fund your position.

At the end of this letter, I will attach the full exchange between you and Robin Siefert to refresh your memory.

Thank you for your time with this matter.

Sincerely,

James Monroe
Executive Director

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