Saturday, October 30, 2010
Page Last Updated: Saturday October 30, 2010 2:29am MDT
A remark made in the Bannock County Clerk’s Office Friday by an official with the Bannock County Republican party has both Republicans and Democrats upset.
Members of the Pocatello chapter NAACP, 2great4hate, the Bannock County Democratic and Republican parties came together to discuss a comment made by Vice Chairman of the Bannock County Republican Party, Ralph Lillig.
At a press conference Friday evening in front of the Bannock County Courthouse Lillig said he and other’s were talking about football when he said, “…I made an anecdotal joke that was intended to be humorous, it was not. It was in bad taste.”
President of the Pocatello chapter NAACP, Michael Pettaway said he agreed the comment was in bad taste. He added, “…it was possibly taken out of context…he made a racial joke, some took offense to it.”
One of the people who overheard the Lillig was offended by the comment. Past chair of the Democratic Party, John Perryman said, “I was upset and did not like his joke and straight up told him that.”
Perryman said he overheard the comment that was made while they along with many other people were in their official capacity at the Bannock County Courthouse. He said the two of them along with others were inspecting election machines for November 2nd’s general election.
Perryman added, “Making racial statements or jokes about little black children not knowing their fathers, I don’t think it can be taken out of context or a racial slur.”
However, Lillig said he apologized to Perryman and others for the “joke” he made and added, “I thought my anecdotal remark may have been tasteless there was no offense taken or racial slurs made.” He added, “I have neither hate nor have hate towards anyone in our community.
Both Lillig and other officials with the Republican Party want people in Bannock County to understand Lillig’s comments were not a representation of the Republican Party.
“The Republican Party did not make the comment, I did.” Lillig said.