Illinois Republican gubernatorial candidate Darren Bailey is facing backlash after footage from 2017 showed him comparing abortion to the Holocaust, according to NBC Chicago.
"The attempted extermination of the Jews of World War II doesn't even compare on a shadow of the life that has been lost with abortion," he said in footage republished by Forward, a national Jewish newspaper.
The Anti-Defamation League's Midwest chapter issued a statement saying, "The Holocaust and abortion are not the same. The [comments] are deeply offensive, and do an incredible disservice to the millions of Jews and other innocent victims killed by the Nazis."
In a statement issued Aug. 1, Bailey attempted to clarify his remarks, saying, "I meant to emphasize the tragedy of millions of babies being lost. I support, and have met with, many people in the Jewish community in Illinois, and look forward to continuing to work with them to make Illinois a safer and more affordable place for everyone."
Chicago-based abortion-rights group Personal PAC issued its own statement, which Windy City Times received: "It's bad enough that GOP gubernatorial candidate Darren Bailey believes abortion should be criminalized in Illinoiseven in cases of rape and incestbut now he is demeaning the Holocaust and the memory of those who were lost in and survived one of the greatest stains in human history. As someone who grew up in the Skokie area, an American epicenter of Holocaust survivors during the late '60s and early '70s, and attended Niles West High School then, I can't even fathom the pain of hearing Darren Bailey's comment: 'The attempted extermination of the Jews of World War II doesn't even compare on a shadow of the life that has been lost with abortion.'
"Personal PAC joins Governor Pritzker, the Jewish community and all decent [Illinoisans] in condemning the irresponsible and contemptuous comments of Darren Bailey. People who hold these dangerous views should have absolutely no place in government."
In addition, the JB for Governor campaign released a new ad holding Bailey responsible for his 2017 comments.