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Indiana official resigns after Facebook post echoing Trump

January 19, 2018

FRANKLIN, Ind. (AP) — A city official in Indiana has resigned after a backlash over his social media post that used the same derogatory word to describe some countries as President Donald Trump reportedly said at the White House.

Joe Ault announced his resignation from the Franklin City Council in a letter to the city and the Johnson County Republican Party on Thursday, the Daily Journal reported. The resignation comes a week after Ault’s Facebook post repeatedly used the word “shithole” to describe other countries and Democrats. It was posted just hours after reports of Trump using that word.

Several social media groups had called on their members to protest at an upcoming City Council meeting.

“After having a few days to think about this I can see no reason to put the city or the council through any more bad publicity,” Ault said in his letter. “I know the city is in very capable hands with the current leadership that’s in place.

Ault also apologized “to the citizens of Franklin and to the council for my lack of good judgment in this matter.”

Ault is also a reserve deputy at the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office. Sheriff Doug Cox said that he would speak with the chief deputy and the deputies who oversee the reserve program to look into the matter.

Cox said that until a decision is made, Ault isn’t working as a reserve deputy and doesn’t have the authority to take on part-time work as a reserve sheriff’s deputy.

Franklin Mayor Steve Barnett said he was disappointed by the comments in the post. He said the comments don’t reflect the city’s views.

Republican precinct committee members will meet to fill Ault’s position on the seven-member board until city elections are conducted next year.

Franklin is a city of 23,000 people about 25 miles (40 kilometers) south of Indianapolis.

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Information from: Daily Journal, http://www.dailyjournal.net

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