A post on a Facebook page that belongs to the Democratic mayor of a Lackawanna County borough called for several prominent elected officials to “be shot” because of their support for abortion access.
Old Forge Mayor Robert Legg’s Facebook account is private and cannot be accessed by the Capital-Star. A screenshot of the post, dated Jan. 23, was shared by a former resident of the borough and confirmed as authentic via other screenshots and conversations with current residents.
“The Governor of New York should be shot for allowing abortions up to nine months. That is murder. Nanci Pilosi [sic] you dirt ball along with Schumer and the rest of you treasonous bastards should be shot. Hope you left wing and snowflakes and illegal sympathizers are proud of what you voted into office,” the post reads.
“Why don’t we help our homeless and poor. It’s all for votes to keep their cushy jobs and Power. How about our Veterans? You spineless jellyfish. I’d like to have 5 minutes alone in a locked room with each of you.”
Legg did not respond to multiple requests for comment. (Update: Legg admitted to TV news outlet WNEP he wrote a post, but denied calling for anyone to “be shot.”)
“We believe in giving people a voice, but we also want everyone using Facebook to feel safe,” a Facebook spokesperson said in an email. “It’s why we have Community Standards and remove anything that violates them.”
Old Forge is a borough of 8,000 just outside of Scranton, most famous as an off-beat pizza capital in travel writing.
Republican state House candidate Frank Scavo, whose conspiratorial and anti-Muslim social media posts were reported on by the Capital-Star and the Scranton Times-Tribune, is a resident and school board president in Old Forge.
When presented with screenshots of the Jan. 23 post, Borough Council Vice President Russell Rinaldi said he did not recall seeing the post until checking his messages and seeing that a friend from Harrisburg had shared the post.
He declined to comment on its content.
“I only worry about what I post and what I post only. I can only control myself,” Rinaldi said. “What others do is beyond my power.”
Another Council member, Lou Febbo, said he had not seen the post, but said he saw “nothing wrong” with it. “It’s out there for everyone to see,” Febbo said via Facebook message.
“If someone disagrees with him they have the decision not [to] vote for him, but this man certainly does not deserve to be vilified for his beliefs and a Facebook post made out of frustration.”
Chris Patrick, chair of the Lackawanna County Democratic Committee, said Tuesday that he would not defend or condone such remarks from anyone.
He added he had only met Legg once recently, at an event for the local Democratic state House candidate Bridget Malloy Kosierowski. Legg is not a committee member for the party.
“I can’t defend that type of behavior, I don’t condone that type of behavior in this Democratic Party,” Patrick said.