November 12th, 2008
02:38 PM ET
10 years ago

Congressman sorry for likening Obama to Hitler

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Rep. Paul Broun is sorry for seemingly comparing Obama to Adolf Hitler."]

(CNN) - Republican Paul Broun is sorry for calling President-elect Barack Obama a 'Marxist' and comparing him to Adolf Hitler, the Georgia Congressman said Tuesday.

“I regret putting it that way,” he told WGAC radio in Augusta, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution. “I apologize to anyone who has taken offense at that.”

In an interview with the Associated Press earlier this week, Broun admitted to calling the future commander-in-chief a 'Marxist' at a recent Rotary club meeting, and said Obama has expressed support for policies similar to those of Hitler.

"It may sound a bit crazy and off base, but the thing is, he's the one who proposed this national security force," Broun told the AP. "I'm just trying to bring attention to the fact that we may– may not, I hope not - but we may have a problem with that type of philosophy of radical socialism or Marxism."

Broun was specifically referring to a July speech by Obama, where the then-Democratic presidential nominee said he supports a civilian force helping the military when it comes to national security: "We've got to have a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well funded [as the military]," Obama said in the speech that was largely a call to national service.

Responding to those comments, Broun told the AP Monday: "That's exactly what Hitler did in Nazi Germany and it's exactly what the Soviet Union did. When he's proposing to have a national security force that's answering to him, that is as strong as the U.S. military, he's showing me signs of being Marxist."

"We can't be lulled into complacency," Broun added. "You have to remember that Adolf Hitler was elected in a democratic Germany. I'm not comparing him to Adolf Hitler. What I'm saying is there is the potential."

The Obama transition office did not respond to Broun's comments, and in his interview Tuesday to WGAC, the first term congressman said, “The point I tried to make is that he is extremely liberal, he has promoted a lot of socialistic ideas, and it just makes me concerned."

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (708 Responses)
  1. Gary Sieburg

    Its just amazing that it seems that all criticism of Obama ends in an apology. I find it very very scary! The media is totally afraid to do its job.

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  2. Anonymous

    Comparing socialists to facsists. Hitler was as far right as you can be. This guy's got the historical comprehension of Sarah Palin. Maybe he should be her running mate in 2012. Furthermore, the implication is that it's okay to do military national service, but not civil national service. This guy's closer to Hitler than he realizes.

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  3. G.R.I.T. - Girl Raised in the South

    Carlson says, "I regret putting it that way." “I apologize to anyone who has taken offense at that.” Hmmm. So, he apologizes to most everyone? Because any rational, thinking American, uninfluenced by the utter insanity of the religious right/moral majority/republican party, would take offense at that. He regrets "putting it that way". There was another, better way to liken President-Elect Obama to Hitler?

    This man is an example of so many things that are wrong with our nation. He is uninformed about policy proposals, the current state of our economy and our country. He is uninformed about history, historical figures and their beliefs. He is uninformed about political and economic theories such as Marxism, socialism, fascism.

    He, and many others like him, need to go back to college and take a few courses of History, Political Science and Economics, both macro-and micro-. Maybe then he, and others like him, can initiate a reasoned, intellectual discourse with the American people.

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  4. Denver for Obama

    The Nazi party was the extreme RIGHT WING idiot. Nazism and Communism are about as far apart on the political spectrum as you can get.

    Now Paul Broun has to eat his words cause Obama had a LANDSLIDE victory, and he now has little to NO power as the repugnant party is in the gutter.

    Looks like it's officially butt kissing time for you Paul Broun!

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  5. Rose from Omaha

    You only show stupidity when you take things out of context and expound on them without true knowledge of the whole. This is one congress man who could just stay in Georgia. Do they have RECALL?

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  6. Peter Formaini

    He's from Georgia.

    Why is anyone the least bit surprised?

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  7. Concerned Citizen

    Paul thinks of himself as "conservative" when in fact his comments are radical and designed to incite anger. The repub base should purge these folks to bring back balance in their platform.

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  8. azteczen

    In respond to a prior post ' True Hurts'
    "It is sad, I can not find any word to discribe this guy because there is no word yet found in the world vocabulary to best suite this guy."

    My commnet is:
    I found the word that should be now defined in the Dictonary:
    Palin or Palinism – Ignorant, Hateful, Hillbilly, racist, conspiratorial.
    So, Congressman Broun is a PALINIST.

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |


    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  10. don

    Keep your head down Obama. Just as we saw with Bill Clinton there is nothing the RNC will not do, and no bottom to how low they will sink to go on the attack.

    It is the only thing they are good at. They certainly cannot govern.

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  11. Mark F

    Like Edwards, Clinton , Foley, Craig and all the rest, this guy is NOT sorry for what he did but that he GOT CAUGHT.

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  12. Soccer mom

    I've read people saying ridiculous things like "He 's going to take my money and give it to people that aren't working". So when Rep. Paul Broun says something like this even when it is not accurate it scares a lot of people unneccesarily. I'm not saying to follow someone blindly. We should never do that. But people in leadership roles like the rep. should be more responsible in their public dialogue... Unless of course it is his intention to use scare tactics.

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  13. Ann Blye

    Where to begin? This Broun is unbelievable to extrapolate have a call to Nation service Hitler like. Put him in as VP to Palin whose lack of education, knowledge and a million things and that she thinks she might "shove her way in if there is an opportunity " sic (her words) is scary because she seems to mesmerize certian segments of the population. When she talked about the "how the political game is played" she is scary if she thinks we can survive in this global world we live in. Granted politics is somewhat a game but that is one of the things we need to work on and probably change–requirements for the highest and next to highest office in the country are sadly lacking. I am thinking of educational, knowledge base of International affairs. Nuf said.

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  14. M. Bryan

    The congressman's non-apologetic apology is as offensive as his
    first remarks. He can't even get his historical analogy correct. No
    wonder Georgia went for McCain with lealders like this.

    November 12, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  15. Bill

    So Hitler was a liberal? This fool needs to go back to school. Hitler was a dictator, and dictators tend to embrace extreme right-wing values over left-wing ones. What a fool this clown is...the new face of the GOP everyone!

    November 12, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  16. Matthew

    And the American failure to distinguish between Marxism, Fascism, and Socialism rears its ugly head once again.
    Its quite humorous that a Republican would compare Obama to Hitler.

    November 12, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  17. john

    Obama Thought Police November 12th, 2008 11:02 am ET

    How dare we allow someone to think like that?

    this is america. we may think any way we want to think, please don't forget that. thank you very much .

    November 12, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  18. Proud to be American

    Who voted this guy into Congress? that is the question..... he speaks for the people who hired him and now he apologizes .... you said what you said so man up.... we know your true feelings.... think about that!

    November 12, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  19. Tony

    Don't be fooled, Georgia. He regrets nothing, but is aware that the Republican brand is weakened and wants to be re-elected. Ensure that he is voted out!

    November 12, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  20. Remi N.

    You guys (Republicans)are the ones always try to label others. you give names, paint others to be bad....etc...
    Did you find out who you are? just fake Christians,....
    You call others : liberals, terrorists, socialists,Marxists , anything you can find negative to diminize others.
    You blame Pro-choice candidates by talking about life starts at conception, but you are ready to go to war everywhere for your own good where you kill more innocents all over the world... Just hypocrites, and fake christians.., support slavery but call themselves Christians. Cannot diversify your party (all full of old whites) , hold on racism but use God and Jesus names like they (Jesus and God) were whites. Show us ,( the others )that you are real christians by opening your party to others, and stop playing the good ones, cause you are not.....

    November 12, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  21. JNC, California

    This guy is sad!! I hope Georgia realizes 1 step forward 3 steps backwards! WOW!! Can President-Elect @least be sworn into office!!

    November 12, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  22. Marcus Riley Philadelphia, PA

    And the re-writing of history, according to the Republican Party, Hitler was.....a Marxist?!?!?! Are there any Republicans out there who can actually provide a definition for Marxism or socialism? Have they ever actually read Karl Marx? Or do they just repeat these catch-phrases the same way they repeat their favortie corporate jingles?

    November 12, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  23. Jawin McCain

    More fear politics spewing from the mouths of Republicans, what a bunch of sore losers.........

    November 12, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  24. Tom

    Idiotic comment. Factually baseless, logically self-contradicting, and rhetorically self-defeating. Other than that, way to go, Mr. Broun!

    November 12, 2008 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  25. r sisk, nevada

    I hope after foolish comments like these, this idiot will be sent packing next election. I am never surprised by the narrow mindsets of so many people in our great country. The scary thing is this guy was elected. Yikes.

    November 12, 2008 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
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