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Rep. Steve Knight's excuse for featuring a bigoted constituent in his campaign ad doesn't pass the smell test

Rep. Steve Knight's excuse for featuring a bigoted constituent in his campaign ad doesn't pass the smell test
Rep. Steve Knight makes a campaign stop at his Simi Valley party headquarters. (Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: As a resident of Republican Rep. Steve Knight’s House district, I had to laugh when I read his statement about helping an Air Force veteran receive a lung transplant, and then featuring him in an ad despite the fact that he had posted numerous racist and anti-Semitic videos online: “Our office is very open. We try to help anyone who walks in, and that’s the way we go about business.”

When I and other constituents tried to visit Knight’s field office to discuss gun safety legislation, his repeated votes for repealing the Affordable Care Act and other important issues, his staff locked the doors, turned out the lights as if no one was there, and called the Sheriff’s Department on us.

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A 67-year-old lady is no threat. But, yeah, I am a Democrat.

Marcy Miroff Rothenberg, Porter Ranch

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To the editor: It’s one thing for Knight’s reelection campaign to create an ad featuring a grateful constituent. And it’s feasible, I suppose, that a busy campaign worker might have neglected to vet the subject.

But for an aide to so weakly respond that the congressman doesn't provide help based on political views is inexcusable. When he was first asked about this, Knight had an opportunity to be honorable and denounce the kind of hatred that has resulted in deadly violence across our nation.

As a Knight constituent, as a journalist for nearly 30 years who [David] Brayton apparently would like to see dead, and as the wife of a heart transplant recipient, I wonder if it was perhaps the lung of a Jew, a Muslim or a Central American immigrant that saved Brayton’s life.

Patricia Farrell Aidem, Valencia

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