Toms River school official drops reelection bid amid controversial posts

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TOMS RIVER -

A Toms River School Board member has dropped his bid for reelection following controversial Facebook posts about two Muslim congresswomen and Islam.

Dan Leonard has refused to apologize or resign for the remarks, saying that his First Amendment right allows him to make them.

But he says that he won’t seek reelection because he no longer wishes “to compromise the integrity of my family or the amazing strides this district team has made over the past three years.”

RELATED: Toms River school board member won't resign over posts on 2 Muslim reps, Islam 
RELATED: Group calls on school board member to resign for anti-Muslim comments 

“I apologize to my supporters for putting myself in this position. The same thing that people love about my style has ultimately ended our collective mission! I will never be good at being a ‘politician’ - I am a leader!” Leonard wrote on his official reelection Facebook page.

Leonard came under fire when he posted a news article about Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib’s suggestion to stage a hunger strike to protest Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The article was accompanied by the caption “My life would be complete if she/they died.”

Leonard also made several posts calling Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar a terrorist. He also posted a photo of a Barbie doll sporting a black eye and heads scarf with the caption “Sharia Barbie. Come with [hijab], bruises and Quran.”

Leonard says he is going to stay on the board until his term expires on Dec. 31.

 

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