Bill Hagerty’s Senate campaign confirmed with The Tennessee Star that the Republican has resigned from the board of an investment firm that issued statements in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Hagerty previously served as President Donald Trump’s ambassador to Japan and was endorsed by the president in the race to replace Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), who is retiring at the end of his current term.
“R.J. O’Brien stands proudly with the African American Community in support of EQUALITY & PEACE,” the company said in a June 1 tweet, which included a Black Lives Matter hashtag.
The report said the statement was shared on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, but all of the posts have since been deleted.
The leaders of Black Lives Matter have described themselves as “trained Marxists,” seek to defund the police, and openly call for disrupting the “Western-prescribed nuclear family structure” on their website.
When asked for comment on the matter, the campaign referred The Tennessee Star to a resignation letter Hagerty submitted Saturday afternoon.
“At the same time, I have learned that the firm has promoted support for the Black Lives Matter movement, a Marxist organization that seeks to destroy the America that I know and long to support,” Hagerty said in a letter to Gerald Corcoran, chairman and CEO of R.J. O’Brien and Associates.
“And the BLM movement seeks to destroy the nuclear family, calls for violence, promotes anti-Semitism, tears down monuments, and seeks to completely defund and dismantle our police departments,” added the letter, a copy of which was obtained by The Star.
Hagerty claimed he “never approved nor engaged in the firm’s corporate decisions to promote outside entities” as a board member, but said he “cannot in good conscience remain affiliated” with the company.
“This movement wants to rip apart the fabric of our country and destroy many aspects of what makes America exceptional,” the letter concluded. “I vehemently oppose their calls for violence and relentless march towards socialism. Please accept this as my resignation from R.J. O’Brien effective immediately.”
The campaign of Dr. Manny Sethi, Hagerty’s opponent in the Republican primary, noted that Hagerty resigned only after he got caught.
“This is simple: Bill Hagerty has been making money from a company giving money to Black Lives Matter, while his campaign has been spending millions of dollars pretending to oppose Black Lives Matter,” the Sethi campaign said in a statement. “He’s a hypocrite and a fraud, just like his buddy Mitt Romney.”
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