Sterling Heights— The City Council called for Councilman Paul Smith to resign over a video that shows him holding inflammatory signs depicting violence against President Barack Obama and others during a tea party rally in 2009.
The council on Wednesday passed a resolution, 6 to 1, with Smith the "no" vote, urging Smith to resign. He is in his first term on the council.
Mayor Pro Tem Michael Taylor said he began drafting the resolution after he saw the video. He described the images in the video, which runs 3minutes and 15 seconds, as "incredibly disturbing."
"It's beyond unreasonable for anyone to do, and it's obvious we're dealing with someone who is completely irrational," he said.
In the video posted on YouTube, Smith, a tea party member, displayed signs showing illustrations of the impaled head of the president, then-Gov. Jennifer Granholm with a noose around her neck and U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi with bullet holes in her face. The signs also included slurs against undocumented immigrants and gay people.
Reached Wednesday, Smith said he sees nothing offensive about the images, which he said were "good old First Amendment speech."
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