Saugus School Board Official Denies Making Pro-Nazi Comments
SANTA CLARITA (CBSLA.com) — A Santa Clarita-area school board member was under investigation Tuesday after he allegedly espoused pro-Nazi and other controversial views online.
KNX 1070’s Charles Feldman reports Saugus Union School District (SUSD) Board member Stephen Winkler has denied any connection to comments found on his Twitter and YouTube pages.
Local Santa Clarita blog SCVTalk first reported on what it claims are comments Winkler made over the course of about six years, including a Twitter post that read, “A spirit of national socialism is encouraged by an effete core of impudent snobs, who characterize themselves as teachers of Saugus Union.”
SCVTalk also confirmed a YouTube account that allegedly belongs to Winkler featured several comments in support of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party.
The account also shows Winkler allegedly favorited over 150 videos of “small children riding small animals like dogs, goats, and turtles,” according to SCVTalk.
In an interview with KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO, Winkler said he is not responsible for the comments and suggested his online accounts had been compromised.
“I was a member of the Democratic Party all my life,” Winkler said. “How could you be a liberal Democrat and be a supporter of Hitler? That’s an absolute contradiction.”
Despite the denial, Judy Umeck, president of the Saugus school board, confirmed an investigation is underway.
“What the Board will be doing is evaluating the allegations,” Umeck said, adding that Winkler is not an employee of the school district.
As an elected official, Winkler – who said he has no plans to resign – cannot be fired, but the SUSD Board can ask for his resignation or he could be recalled by voters.
A special Board meeting has been called for June 13 at 6:30 p.m. to discuss the matter, according to Umeck.
Winkler was elected to the Board in 2011 and won’t face re-election until 2015.