Politico Editor Resigns After Publishing Home Addresses Of Alt-Right Icon Richard Spencer, Advocating For ‘Baseball Bats’
National editor at Politico Michael Hirsh resigned after publishing the home addresses of alt-right figurehead Richard Spencer Tuesday morning and advocating for serious violence.
Politico confirmed his resignation following requests for comment from The Daily Caller News Foundation.
“Stop whining about Richard B. Spencer, Nazi, and exercise your rights as decent Americans,” Hirsh wrote in a public Facebook post. “Here are his two addresses.”
The Daily Caller News Foundation redacted the home addresses.
“These posts were clearly outside the bounds of acceptable discourse, and POLITICO editors regard them as a serious lapse of newsroom standards,” Politico Editor-In-Chief John Harris and Editor Carrie Budoff Brown told TheDCNF. “They crossed a line in ways that the publication will not defend, and editors are taking steps to ensure that such a lapse does not occur again.”
While Hirsh’s initial post could have been charitably interpreted to imply advocacy of a non-violent protest outside of Spencer’s home or other similar non-violent actions, a subsequent question and answer clarified Hirsh’s intentions.
“Completely agree we should mobilize against his hateful ideas, but what does knowing his home addresses do?” Asked Doug Widmann, Harvard Law graduate and senior vice president at The D. E. Shaw Group. “Send a letter? Confront him in person? Seems like counter-speech is the main thing we can do. You can call it ‘whining’ but I’m not sure that’s fair or constructive. Side note: Apparently the GSA-owned Ronald Reagan International Trade Center in DC felt obligated to host his organization’s event because it can’t discriminate against speech under the First Amendment, so there’s that problem, too.”
Hirsh responded in an unhinged manner: “I wasn’t thinking of a fucking letter, Doug. He lives part of the time next door to me in Arlington. Our grandfathers brought baseball bats to Bund meetings. Want to join me?”
Perhaps knowing it wasn’t such a good idea to advocate openly for serious violence against Spencer in a public format, Hirsh deleted the post, but not before TheDCNF grabbed a screenshot.
Hirsh’s mention of Bund meetings is a reference to the German-American Bund, a Nazi organization in the United States active in the mid-to-late 1930s, which promoted National Socialist ideology and was often subject to violent attacks by Jewish mobsters in New York City and Newark, New Jersey, using baseball bats.
Hirsh’s post comes just days after Spencer’s alt-right organization, the National Policy Institute, held a conference at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, D.C., to celebrate GOP President-elect Donald Trump’s electoral victory as a “step towards identity politics” and remind the audience that “The alt-right is here, the alt-right is not going anywhere, the alt-right is going to change the world.”
The NPI conference has attracted considerable controversy after numerous conference-goers threw up the Nazi salute following a rousing speech. Spencer also referred to the press using the German word “Lügenpresse,” which translates to “lying press.” The National Socialist German Workers’ Party often employed the term to attack critics in the press.