Tommy Thompson’s Son Apologizes For Birther Joke

Former Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson (R)
Start your day with TPM.
Sign up for the Morning Memo newsletter

Jason Thompson, son of former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson, publicly apologized for a remark he made at an event Sunday while speaking on behalf of his father’s Senate campaign — in which he made a joke alluding to the conspiracy theories about President Obama’s place of birth.

“We have the opportunity to send President Obama back to Chicago — or Kenya,” Jason Thompson said, in a video clip recorded by a Democratic tracker, and posted by BuzzFeed. A woman at the event could then be heard on the tape, saying, “We are taking donations for that Kenya trip.”

Also present at the event were Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, as well as Wisconsin GOP Chair Brad Courtney, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

The younger Thompson, 38, is a lawyer at the Milwaukee-based firm Michael Best & Friedrich. On Monday, the firm released a statement strongly distancing itself from his “regrettable” comment.

“Over the weekend, one of our attorneys and the son of Senatorial candidate Tommy Thompson made a regrettable comment at a campaign event for his father. We want to make it clear that the comment made at the campaign event in no way reflects the views, beliefs or values of Michael Best & Friedrich.

Jason has apologized for the comment through the campaign (and to his colleagues at the law firm) and the matter is being dealt with between father and son.”

The Journal Sentinel also reported that during a news conference Sunday evening, Tommy Thompson initially deflected a question about his son’s comment, telling reporters, “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

Later, however, the campaign sent a statement: “The Governor has addressed this with his son, just like any father would do. Jason Thompson said something he should not have, and he apologizes.”

The PollTracker Average currently shows Democratic Rep. Tammy Baldwin leading Thompson, 49.1 percent to 45.2 percent.

Watch the original video of the remarks:

Latest Election 2012
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: