08/08/2013 10:58 pm ET Updated Aug 09, 2013

Steven Krieser, Scott Walker Official, Fired Over Offensive Immigration Comment


An official appointed by Gov. Scott Walker (R-Wis.) was promptly fired on Thursday after comparing undocumented immigrants to the devil in a Facebook comment, Daniel Bice of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

The comment came in response to a photo originally shared by Rep. Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh), who was condemning a bumper sticker that read "USA ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT HUNTING PERMIT."

When former Republican state Rep. Joe Handrick (R-Minocqua) chastised the sticker, Steven Krieser, assistant deputy at the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, said he disagreed. While acknowledging the sticker was "probably over the top," Krieser said Handrick was wrong in defending immigrants.

"You may see Jesus when you look at them. I see Satan," he wrote. "And if they don't like it here, hey, the door they came through to get here swings both ways."

According to Bice, Krieser was fired less than two hours after Walker's office was informed of the comments. Walker spokesman Tom Evenson said in a statement that the comments were "repugnant" and "completely unacceptable."

"Governor Walker condemns his views, and they do not represent the governor or his administration in any way," he said.

This isn't Krieser's first brush with controversy. In 2011, he caused a stir when he issued a memo to Department of Motor Vehicle employees in the state, advising them to not volunteer information about obtaining free voter identification cards. The memo was widely condemned by Democratic lawmakers in the state.

In a conversation on Thursday before he was fired, Krieser admitted that he'd used "a poor choice of words."

"If I had it to do over, I would not have put it up," he said. "I certainly didn't mean any offense."

Read the online conversation here.



Conservatives Pointing Fingers