New Hampshire’s Martin Harty, a freshman state legislator who turns 92 this month, has resigned from office after saying he wished “defective people” could be exiled and left to die in Siberia.
Last week, Harty told a constituent running a community mental health program that “the world is too populated” and there “are too many defective people.” Harty, a Republican, then reportedly told the constituent he wished “we had a Siberia so we could ship them all off to freeze to death and die and clean up the population.”
“I mean all the defective people, the drug addicts, mentally ill, the retarded — all of them,” the elderly lawmaker said when asked to specify what kind of people he was talking about.
According to Harty, nature has a way of “getting rid of stupid people” and it’s a shame “we’re saving everyone who gets born.”
Harty announced he was resigning on Monday due to what he called the “slightly unfavorable publicity” generated by his comments. New Hampshire House Speaker William O’Brien and state GOP chairman Jack Kimball welcomed his retirement. “”I am pleased Mr. Harty acknowledged his comments were not appropriate for a legislator and I am satisfied with his decision to resign,” Kimball said in a statement. “He failed to represent the sentiments of his constituents and the core values and principles of the Republican Party.”
During World War II, Harty served as a quartermaster in the U.S. Army. “As someone who served in General Patton’s Army in North Africa and Italy against dictators like Hitler and Mussolini, he has given far more to our country and our ideals than most of us ever will,” O’Brien said in a statement.