Alabama candidate for AG disputes Holocaust, is coming to NJ
By JAY REEVES
Associated Press Writer
May 12, 2006, 3:56 PM EDT
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- A Democratic candidate for Alabama attorney general denies the Holocaust occurred and said Friday he will speak this weekend in New Jersey to a "pro-white" organization that is widely viewed as being racist.
Larry Darby concedes his views are radical, but he said they should help him win wide support among Alabama voters as he tries to "reawaken white racial awareness" with his campaign against Mobile County District Attorney John Tyson.
The state Democratic chairman, Joe Turnham, said the party became aware of some of Darby's views only days ago and was considering what to do about his candidacy.
"Any type of hatred toward groups of people, especially for political gain, is completely unacceptable in the Alabama Democratic Party," said Turnham.
Speaking in an interview with The Associated Press, Darby said he believes no more than 140,000 Jewish people died in Europe during World War II, and most of them succumbed to typhus.
Historians say about 6 million Jews were slaughtered by the Nazis, but Darby said the figure is a false claim of the "Holocaust industry."
"I am what the propagandists call a Holocaust denier, but I do not deny mass deaths that included some Jews," Darby said. "There was no systematic extermination of Jews. There's no evidence of that at all."
Darby said he will speak Saturday near Newark, N.J., at a meeting of National Vanguard, which bills itself as an advocate for the white race. Some of his campaign materials are posted on the group's Internet site.
"It's time to stop pushing down the white man. We've been discriminated against too long," Darby said in the interview.
New Jersey's Democratic State Committee chief on Friday decried Darby's planned visit, and said in a statement that denying the Holocaust was "historical blasphemy."
"Hate and prejudice are destructive qualities that are not welcome in New Jersey and should be condemned wherever they occur," said party Chairman Joe Cryan. "Mr. Darby should turn around before crossing the Jersey stateline and then give thought to turning his abhorrent attitudes around as well."
A poll published last month indicated the Democratic race for attorney general was up for grabs. The survey showed 21 percent favored Tyson to 12 percent for Darby, but 68 percent of respondents were undecided.
Darby, founder of the Atheist Law Center and a longtime supporter of separation of church and state, said he has no money for campaign advertising and has made only a few campaign speeches.
Tyson said aside from his views on race and the Holocaust, Darby also has publicly advocated legalizing drugs and shooting all illegal immigrants.
"I am astonished as anyone has ever been that anyone is running for public office in Alabama on that platform," said Tyson. "I do not take him as a serious candidate."
Turnham said the party began an investigation last week after hearing about some of Darby's comments in a television interview. While the party supports the free-speech rights of any candidate, Turnham said some of Darby's views appear to be in "a realm of thought that is unacceptable."
"We have Holocaust survivors and families of Holocaust survivors here in Alabama, and many of them are members of the Democratic Party," said Turnham.
The winner of the Democratic primary on June 6 will face either Republican Attorney General Troy King or Mark Montiel, who is opposing King in the GOP primary.