(JTA) — A candidate for the Michigan state legislature apologized for saying a Jewish lawmaker asked a lobbying firm to pay for the bar tab at his daughter’s wedding.
Steve Marino, a Republican and former lobbyist running for the Michigan House of Representatives, was recorded by a Democrat as saying that the Jewish chairman of the state Senate’s appropriations committee once called him and asked him to pay the bar tab for his daughter’s wedding, saying he had forgotten his wallet.
“I need you to come up here and pick up the bar bill at my daughter’s wedding,” Marino said, quoting the unnamed senator, according to the Detroit Free Press, which obtained the recording and posted a story on Monday
It wasn’t just any wedding, but “a Jewish wedding.” Marino explained to the person making the recording, who he thought was a constituent, “They go all out.”
Marino said he checked with his lobbying shop, which agreed to pay the bill, saying the senator would reimburse them.
The Free Press contacted Roger Kahn, who is Jewish and once chaired the appropriations committee – but who is no longer in the senate. Kahn said there was no such incident – neither of his two daughters was married during the time period in question and neither had a Jewish wedding.
Marino, contacted by the Free Press, retracted the story and apologized, saying he was cobbling together stories he had heard from others and inserting himself into the stories to make a point about lobbying.