Republican challenging two incumbents in the 26th district State Assembly primary has at least two Facebook posts that include images of Nazi Germany’s swastika flag.
“I am not a Nazi,” said Christian Barranco, a former Pompton Lakes councilman who is challenging Jay Webber (R-Morris Plains) and Betty Lou DeCroce (R-Parsippany) for the Republican Assembly nomination. “I’ve never posted a swastika. I’m a decent guy.”
Barranco recalled do so after being shown the post, which remains on his Facebook page.
The image Barranco posted offered a comparison to the National Socialist German Workers and the two major political parties in the United States to show that Democrats are more like Nazis than the GOP.
“That was a share,” Barranco said. “I thought it was fitting for all of those who think Republicans are Nazis.”
The image, which sought to illustrate similarities to Nazi Germany and the Democratic Party on issues like control of schools and healthcare, high taxes, blaming capitalism for economic problems, and allowing race to determine identity, had checkmarks in the Nazi and Democratic columns, but an X for Republicans.
“Those are things that occurred in the Nazi regime,” Barranco said.
It was originally posted on February 5, 2019 on a Facebook page called “The Conservative Hammer.” Barranco reposted it the next day with his own message: “To all my friends who insist Republicans are akin to Nazi’s. Explain yourself out on this list. All under the guise of benevolence, Stop it with the Utopia.”
Barranco defended his post in a series of responses on Facebook.
When one person posted “alternative facts,” Barranco responded. “Facts every last one. Make a credible argument and I will change my opinion.”
That was Barranco’s second use of a Nazi symbol on social media.
In 2017, he shared a photo of a Nazi officer that said: “Just remember, Nazi’s were Socialists.”
Barranco told the New Jersey Globe that his views have changed since 2019.
“Making a blanket statement about an entire party is something I’ve done in the past,” he said. “I don’t like blanket statements about political groups.”