YORKTOWN, N.Y. -- The Yorktown Republicans have come under fire after sending out a mailing that critics are calling anti-Semitic.
The mailing depicts Susan Siegel, a former Yorktown Supervisor who is Jewish, as a puppeteer pulling the strings of Ilan Gilbert, the Democratic nominee for supervisor, Councilman Vishnu Patel, a Democrat running for re-election on the town board ,and Alice Roker, who is running as a Democrat for town board.
On the back is the Yorktown Republican slate, Supervisor Michael Grace, Councilman Tom Diana and Rob Puff, with the message, "We will never take a knee."
Gilbert, Roker, and Patel all support making Yorktown a sanctuary town, the mailing says. Over the summer, the Yorktown Democrats supported the Immigrant Protection Act, which was passed by the Westchester County Board of Legislators. The act was vetoed by County Executive Rob Astorino and the veto override failed by one vote. The Yorktown Town Board, led by four Republicans, approved a resolution praising Astorino's veto.
"That means Yorktown a safe haven for illegal immigrants causing your taxes to go up," the mailing said. "How can we trust them to protect us when they won't protect us? Say no to the frightful four."
Siegel said the mailing was a clear dog whistle of anti-Semitism, racism and anti-immigrant sentiment.
"Six white males who don’t kneel versus two Jews, one a woman, an African American woman and a dark-skinned immigrant plus the sanctuary city text which has no application in Yorktown," Siegel said.
Elliot Krowe and Ron Stokes, the co-chairs of the Yorktown Democratic Committee said the mailing was racist, nativist, bigoted and intolerant.
"It was not a mistake or an error in judgment," Krowe and Stokes said in a statement. "It was a purposeful, intentional and calculated effort to promote their ticket by appealing to a demographic that trades in these notions, that unmistakably hears these codes and whistles for what they are— calls to 'Blood and Soil.'"
Accusing Jewish people as being "puppet masters" has often been used in anti-Semitic literature.
Matthew Slater of the Yorktown Republicans said the Democratic slate is failing to justify their support for the Immigrant Protection Act.
"These disingenuous antics are nothing more than an attempt to distract voters from their support of this crazy policy," Slater said.
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