Monroe Takes Responsibility For Heated Facebook CommentsPosted: Updated:
Democratic St. Lawrence County district attorney candidate James Monroe is taking responsibility for a Facebook rant last year and is apologizing to anyone it offended.
"To date, I've not been able to locate that comment among my Facebook posting," he said in a news conference in Canton Monday morning.
"But even without being able to specifically confirm that I wrote it, I'm going to take responsibility for it," he said reading from a prepared statement. "I want to apologize to anyone who was offended by it."
7 News reported on his Facebook comments last week. In them, Monroe appears to have gone on the social media site shortly after Donald Trump was elected president and called Trump a fascist.
He also wrote "There is no god" and "Your jesus is just a flaky imaginary piece of s***" while in a heated exchange with Trump supporters.
Monroe said the main thread that night -- which was not provided to 7 News -- "was full of profanity-laced, vulgar insults" aimed at his sister.
"That, together with my outrage at an election campaign which had been marked by misogyny, racism, attacks on the disabled and other blatant forms of disrespect, led me to react fiercely when someone had the audacity to claim that 'Jesus delivered the election to Trump.'"
Saying he respects the principle separating church and state, "my faith, your faith, anyone's faith (or lack thereof) has never affected the way in which I carry out my duties and responsibilities as prosecutor, defense attorney, or judge" and would not affect his performance as district attorney.
He called the way the Facebook posts came to light as a distraction "to bolster my opponent's failing campaign."
Monroe is facing Republican Gary Pasqua. Incumbent District Attorney Mary Rain decided not to run for re-election.
"With just days before voters go to the polls, we need complete focus on the the differences between what my opponent and I offer as district attorney," Monroe said.
Pasqua said he didn't seek out the Facebook comments. And he said he had nothing to do with creating the copies of the comments that are circulating online. His only involvement was to ask a woman who was part of that Facebook conversation to tell her story “if she were comfortable with it.”
How much influence this controversy will have on the district attorney's race is not known. Both candidates have pitched themselves as reformers. They say they'll bring efficiency and accountability back to the DA's office. Voters head to the polls November 7.