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County GOP chief: Posting wildfire meme was a mistake

November 21, 2018

LISBON, Ohio (AP) — A county GOP chairman in Ohio says he was mistaken in publishing a meme on Facebook that appeared to refer to the California wildfires as “God’s Punishment to Liberal California.”

Columbiana County Republican Party Chairman Dave Johnson says he deleted the meme. It showed a landscape ablaze along with the text about “Liberal California.”

Johnson said in a statement he didn’t intend “any disrespect to the innocent lives” lost but was pointing to policies he believes contributed to the fires. He said he confesses to “erring in my recent post” regarding the wildfires.

Authorities say the blazes have killed more than 75 people and destroyed thousands of homes.

Mahoning County Democratic Party Chairman David Betras called the post “disgusting” and said Johnson owed victims, their families and firefighters an apology.

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