Once the controversy over a Muslim invocation that was supposed to have been delivered to the state House of Representatives began making headlines (I was the first to write about it on Thursday) the Republicans who objected to the invocation began making apologies.
Rep. Dwight Kiefert, who has been at the heart of the controversy, told me in a radio interview (audio here) that his objections to the invocations were simply because it happened on Ash Wednesday. That doesn’t seem to be the case as Kiefert has hinted at a boycott by himself and others should a second stab at the invocation happen this coming week.
He also told me that an apology had been posted on the District 24 Republicans Facebook page. That was true for a couple of hours, it seems, but the apology has since been taken down.
“The apology went up after his morning interview with kfgo, but was taken down within 2 hours,” a resident of District 24 told me via email this afternoon while providing screenshots of the apology while it was still up. “It was down before your interview with him Friday afternoon.”
You can read the apology, signed by the District 24 Republican Committee, below. As of the time of this posting, you can see that the most recent public posting on the North Dakota District 24 Republicans Facebook page was from February 19th.
I can’t imagine why the District 24 Republicans would put up an apology and take it back down, other than perhaps there’s some disagreement over whether or not they should be apologizing.
Which would be astounding if true. Denying a Muslim the opportunity to speak to the Legislature is something that ought to be apologized for. And it seems duplicitous to say you’ve apologized, only to take the apology down later.