clearn.png
Tuesday January 25th, 2022 3:37AM

Surprise NJ Senate winner says sorry amid scrutiny of posts

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — A truck driver who ousted the powerful New Jersey Senate president in the election previously posted online calling Islam “a false religion,” comparing vaccine mandates to the Holocaust and defending rioters at the Capitol.

Republican Edward Durr apologized on Friday after media outlets highlighted the posts. His victory over Steve Sweeney, widely regarded as the second-most powerful Democrat in state government, in Tuesday’s election shocked the state’s political establishment. Durr spent a paltry sum on his campaign.

On Thursday and Friday, media reports highlighted posts Durr had made on Twitter and Facebook, including some critical of immigrants, boasting of defying state COVID-19 mask mandates, and making misogynist attacks on Democratic elected officials like then-Vice President-elect Kamala Harris.

Durr issued a statement Thursday night to radio station WHYY, and Friday to the website New Jersey Globe apologizing for the posts.

“I’m a passionate guy and I sometimes say things in the heat of the moment,” Durr said in identical comments to both outlets. “If I said things in the past that hurt anybody’s feelings, I sincerely apologize.”

Twitter showed Friday that Durr's account had been deactivated by the user.

In a screenshot of a 2019 Twitter post captured by a WNYC reporter, Durr wrote, “Mohammed was a pedophile! Islam is a false religion! Only fools follow Muslim teachings! It is a cult of hate!”

“I support everybody’s right to worship in any manner they choose and to worship the God of their choice,” Durr said in his statement to the media outlets. "I support all people and I support everybody’s rights. That’s what I am here to do, work for the people and support their rights.”

Durr did not respond to phone and email messages from The Associated Press seeking comment Friday. A spokesperson for New Jersey Senate Republicans declined comment Friday, referring a reporter to Durr's statement.

Also on Friday, the New Jersey chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations called on Durr to meet with Muslim leaders and renounce hate.

In other posts, Durr seemed to equate not opposing COVID-19 vaccination mandates to remaining silent during the Holocaust, including with the post a photo of a yellow star that the National Socialist party forced Jewish people to wear.

He also said on Facebook that the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol was not an insurrection but “an unauthorized entry by undocumented federal employers.”

Durr's Facebook posts show he closely followed and posted in support of former President Donald Trump's baseless claims about election fraud. On Jan. 7, he wrote on Facebook, “I do not agree or support the entering of the Capitol! But I was not surprised after courts refuse to do their job!”

He also boasted last year of defying New Jersey's indoor mask requirements while visiting stores, and appeared to downplay the seriousness of the pandemic.

Durr also used his Facebook account to highlight his campaign activities, posting photos of himself and others speaking with voters at their homes. He conveyed holiday wishes, posted about his dogs and wrote about his successes trying to eat more healthily.

Durr, a commercial truck driver, defeated Sweeney in southern New Jersey's 3rd district, spending just $2,300 on his campaign. He was largely unknown in state politics before Election Day.

Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy, who narrowly won a second term over Republican Jack Ciattarelli, called Durr's posts “outrageous” during a public event Friday. He said he was “stunned” over Sweeney's loss.

  • Associated Categories: U.S. News, Associated Press (AP), AP National News, Top U.S. News short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News, AP Elections, General Presidential Election News, General Senate Election News, AP Elections - Campaigns
© Copyright 2022 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Lawsuits over workplace vaccine rule focus on states' rights
The attorneys general of 26 states have filed federal lawsuits challenging a vaccine mandate for employers issued by the Biden administration
2:49PM ( 6 minutes ago )
Surprise NJ Senate winner says sorry amid scrutiny of posts
A truck driver who ousted the powerful New Jersey Senate president in the election has apologized for social media posts including ones where he called Islam “a false religion,” compared vaccine mandates to the Holocaust and defended rioters at the Capitol
2:46PM ( 8 minutes ago )
US employers shrugged off virus and stepped up hiring
America’s employers boosted their hiring in October, adding a solid 531,000 jobs, the most since July and a sign that the recovery from the pandemic recession is overcoming a virus-induced slowdown
2:27PM ( 27 minutes ago )
U.S. News
NFL Prospect Watch: QB Willis gets chance to raise profile
Malik Willis refused to settle for a backup role
2:46PM ( 9 minutes ago )
A landmark as South Africa's ANC dips below 50% support
South Africa’s ruling African National Congress party has received less than 50% of votes in nationwide elections for the first time
2:14PM ( 41 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Florida considers ousting mockingbird from honorary perch
After nearly a century on its lofty perch, the northern mockingbird may be singing its last melodies as the state bird of Florida
12:03PM ( 2 hours ago )
Adams, Bragg win NYC election amid historic Black leadership
When New York City voters this week chose Eric Adams as the city’s next mayor and Alvin Bragg as the Manhattan district attorney, they elevated two Black men into two of the city’s most powerful elected offices
11:52AM ( 3 hours ago )
Thousands of intel officers refusing vaccine risk dismissal
Thousands of intelligence officers could soon face dismissal for failing to comply with the U.S. government’s vaccine mandate, leading to concerns from Republican lawmakers about potentially hurting agencies considered critical to national security
11:37AM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
GOP state officials push back on employer vaccine mandate
Republican governors, lawmakers and attorneys general are forming a wall of opposition to President Joe Biden's plan to require vaccinations or COVID-19 testing at all private employers of 100 workers or more
10:31PM ( 16 hours ago )
Biden administration sues Texas over new voting restrictions
The Biden administration is suing Texas over new voting rules that outlasted a summer of dramatic protests by Democrats
8:01PM ( 18 hours ago )
Supply chain delays disrupt California agriculture exports
California farmers say they are having trouble exporting their crops because of delays in the global supply chain
7:30PM ( 19 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
Ex-prosecutor in SKorea wins opposition presidential ticket
South Korea’s conservative former top prosecutor, who has called for a stronger U.S. security guarantee to neutralize North Korean nuclear threats, has won the main opposition party’s hotly contested nomination for next March’s presidential election
5:29AM ( 9 hours ago )
Analyst who aided Trump-Russia dossier charged with lying
A Russian analyst who provided information for a dossier of research used during the Trump-Russia investigation has been charged with lying to the FBI when questioned about his work
9:30PM ( 17 hours ago )
Top NJ lawmaker loses to GOP, dealing blow to Democrats
New Jersey’s longtime state Senate president, Democrat Steve Sweeney lost reelection, falling to a Republican newcomer who spent little money and underscoring Democratic woes in the Biden era
4:21PM ( 22 hours ago )
AP Elections
Phil Murphy narrowly reelected governor in New Jersey
New Jersey Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy has won reelection over Republican Jack Ciattarelli
10:57PM ( 1 day ago )
Biden says Virginia race wasn't blowback against him
President Joe Biden says the Democrats' setbacks in Tuesday's elections underscore that the party needs to “produce for the American people."
8:00PM ( 1 day ago )
Youngkin's winning formula: Trump voters plus suburbs
When Virginia Republicans nominated Glenn Youngkin as their gubernatorial candidate in May, they wondered whether the former private equity executive could appeal to both diverse, educated voters in the state’s northern suburbs and white voters in its rural GOP strongholds
5:41PM ( 1 day ago )
General Presidential Election News
Trump chops with Braves fans before Game 4 of World Series
Former President Donald Trump did the Tomahawk chop with Atlanta Braves fans before Game 4 of the World Series only months after calling for a boycott of Major League Baseball
1:35AM ( 5 days ago )
Ex-NC Gov. McCrory eyes political comeback with Senate bid
Former North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory is among three top Republicans engaged in a hotly contested 2022 U.S. Senate primary
6:22PM ( 5 days ago )
6 candidates for US Senate in Ohio vie for evangelical votes
The lone Republican moderate at a U_S_ Senate candidate forum in Ohio says that at one point he felt “like a Browns fan in Pittsburgh Stadium.”
1:11PM ( 1 week ago )
General Senate Election News
Rattled Democrats reckon with bruising results in VA, NJ
Democrats are blending finger-pointing, optimism and a renewed push to unstick their stalled legislative agenda as they scramble for Election Day lessons from a jolting loss in Virginia and a closer than expected win in New Jersey
7:07PM ( 1 day ago )
NJ governor's race has Murphy, Ciattarelli in dead heat
New Jersey Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy and Republican Jack Ciattarelli were virtually deadlocked early Wednesday after a campaign centered on the incumbent’s progressive policies and handling of the pandemic
3:45AM ( 2 days ago )
Murphy, Ciattarelli in close fight for NJ governor's race
New Jersey Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy appeared to be in a close fight Tuesday with Republican challenger Jack Ciattarelli as he waged a reelection campaign centered on the progressive policies he’s enacted in his first term
1:41AM ( 2 days ago )
AP Elections - Campaigns
Lawsuits over workplace vaccine rule focus on states' rights
The attorneys general of 26 states have filed federal lawsuits challenging a vaccine mandate for employers issued by the Biden administration
2:49PM ( 6 minutes ago )
US employers shrugged off virus and stepped up hiring
America’s employers boosted their hiring in October, adding a solid 531,000 jobs, the most since July and a sign that the recovery from the pandemic recession is overcoming a virus-induced slowdown
2:27PM ( 28 minutes ago )
Witness: Kenosha shooting victim was acting 'belligerently'
A witness at Kyle Rittenhouse's murder trial says the first man shot on the streets of Kenosha was acting “belligerently" but did not appear to pose a serious threat to anyone
2:26PM ( 29 minutes ago )
University changes course; professors may testify in lawsuit
The University of Florida is reversing its position, saying it will allow three professors to testify as experts in a lawsuit challenging a new state election law
2:07PM ( 48 minutes ago )
Vaccine refusals in intelligence agencies raise GOP concerns
Thousands of intelligence officers could soon face dismissal for failing to comply with the U.S. government’s vaccine mandate, leading to concerns from Republican lawmakers about potentially hurting agencies considered critical to national security
2:02PM ( 53 minutes ago )