Congressman Mike Pence (R, Indiana) has issued a public apology for a comment in a closed door meeting that compared the American Dental Association's twice-a-day teeth-brushing recommendation with Nazi genocide that killed an estimated 5.7 million European Jews between 1933 and 1945.
"I am sorry if my remarks offended anyone," Pence said Thursday. "Although they were taken entirely out of context, I can see how some Dentist-Americans might take offense."
Earlier in the day, Pence apologized for comparing the U.S. Supreme Court's upholding of the Affordable Care Act--often referred to as "Obamacare"--to the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.
"I admit, that one didn't make a lot of sense," said Pence, who is the Republican nominee in the race for Indiana Governor. "When you think about it, a plan to protect the poor and sick from catastrophic health care costs isn't very much like a terrorist attack at all.
"At least the dentist/Nazi thing has some basis in reality. I mean, they're all sadists, am I right? And there was that movie with Dustin Hoffman. You know the one I mean."
Sources speculate that Pence's remarks were prompted by fear of stricter suggestions from the ADA. Indiana has a low teeth requirement for residents.
Also in the closed-door meeting, Pence allegedly compared soccer with the "Trail of Tears" forced evacuation of American Indians from southeastern parts of the U.S. following the Indian Removal Act of 1830; and recent efforts to reduce the size of sugary soft drinks to the deaths of 21% of the Cambodian population during Pol Pot's three-year rule.
"I was really on a roll there, wasn't I?" said Pence, who refused a breathalyzer test. "But, come on. The soccer thing makes sense. That game is definitely as un-American as those Indians were."
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