Congressional candidate Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher, better known as "Joe the Plumber," has released a controversial campaign video drawing a dubious link between gun control and the Holocaust.
"In 1939, Germany established gun control," Wurzelbacher says in the video. "From 1939 to 1945, six million Jews and seven million others, unable to defend themselves, were exterminated."
He draws the same connection between gun control and the Armenian genocide.
The video shows close-up footage of Wurzelbacher loading ammunition into a gun and then blasting apples and tomatoes off targets at a shooting range. He then turns to the camera and says, "I love America."
Wurzelbacher became a minor political celebrity in 2008 when he questioned then-candidate Barack Obama about his tax policy at a campaign event. Obama's Republican opponent, Arizona Sen. John McCain, often referred to the exchange and coined the nickname "Joe the Plumber."
Wurzelbacher is now running to unseat Rep. Marcy Kaptur in Ohio's ninth congressional district.
"If you hunt or just like shooting guns, the 2nd Amendment will always be a good thing," reads a description of the video posted Monday by the campaign on YouTube. "History also tells us it's our last line of defense in the face of an out-of-control government."
The National Jewish Democratic Coalition told The Hill newspaper that the ad was "beyond the pale."
"Using the memories of the six million Jews killed in the Holocaust to make a political point is never appropriate, under any circumstances," NJDC head David Harris told the newspaper.
In an interview with Politico, Wurzelbacher dismissed those complaining about the video as "whiners."
"I'm just stating the fact that history is very important -- people need to understand what happened," Wurzelbacher told Politico. "Different countries around the world have tried to disarm their citizens, and then have tried to exterminate their own now-unarmed citizens."
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