Menu
Virginia Republican Apologizes for Jewish Joke

Virginia Republican Apologizes for Jewish Joke

An official in the Virginia Republican Party apologized for an anti-Semitic joke.

“Earlier this week, I made a lighthearted attempt at humor to which some have taken offense,” John Whitbeck, the chairman of the party in the state’s Tenth Congressional District, said in a statement posted Sept. 20 on its website. “It was certainly not my intent to offend anyone and I sincerely apologize to those who were.”

Whitbeck, introducing Ken Cuccinelli, the state’s attorney general and GOP candidate for governor last week, related a joke that had the Jews presenting the pope with a bill for the Last Supper.

Cuccinelli said the joke was inappropriate, and the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington condemned the joke.

Whitbeck at first refused to apologize for the joke, saying he had heard it from his priest, and claimed to be the victim of Democrats and their allies ahead of a hotly contested gubernatorial campaign.

Ron Halber, the director of the Washington JCRC, said he spoke Monday with Whitbeck, who apologized again.

“There was clearly pressure from within the Republican ranks on him to apologize,” Halber told JTA. “But he was genuinely apologetic and was educated as to what he said had been hurtful.”

Written by

JTA

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Next article

Recommend this article

Virginia Republican Apologizes for Jewish Joke

Thank you!

This article has been sent!

Close