EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


December 4, 2013

Editorial: No defense for boorish attack on Garcia


The attack drew national attention and criticism of Sullivan. But Sullivan, a Central Catholic graduate, refused to apologize.

“I want to apologize to Kim Kardashian for comparing her to a right-wing extremist like Marilinda Garcia,” he tweeted.

Kuster told a Boston television station that such derogatory comments from members of either party have no place in politics. But the Democratic establishment in New Hampshire has been largely silent on the incident.

Imagine the parties reversed, and that a Republican legislator had made such disparaging, sexist comments about a Democratic candidate. The howls of outrage from Democrats would be enough to wake the dead.

This apparently isn’t Sullivan’s first run-in with Garcia. According to the NH Journal website, Sullivan was privately reprimanded in 2012 by then-Speaker O’Brien for barging down an aisle in the House chamber and knocking another legislator to her seat. The toppled legislator was Garcia, the website says.

NH Journal has a copy of the letter O’Brien sent to Sullivan. In it, the speaker calls on Sullivan to “show your colleagues the respect and dignity to which they, and you, are entitled on the House floor, regardless of party affiliation, ideology or beliefs.” He noted it was the second time Sullivan had to be admonished for “inappropriate behavior.”

Sullivan, as a legislator, has no obligation to approve of Garcia’s politics. He is, however, required to treat his legislative colleague with dignity and respect.

He owes Garcia and the people of New Hampshire a sincere public apology.

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