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During the El Paso City Council meeting on Monday, October 26, 2020 there was an exchange between City Representative Peter Svarzbein and Mayor Dee Margo that has become controversial. During a heated discussion regarding emergency procedures for the recent Covid-19 outbreak, Dee Margo used the term “Gestapo tactic” to describe Svarzbein’s amendment to the disaster declaration. Svarzbein is Jewish whose grandmother survived the Holocaust.

Listen to the excerpt of the exchange between Margo and Svarzbien:

https://elpasopolitics.files.wordpress.com/2020/10/gestapo_comment_27oct20_01-public.mp3
Dee Margo/Peter Svarzbein exchange at City Council meeting on October 27, 2020.

The El Paso Politics requested comments from Peter Svarzbein, Dee Margo, and mayoral candidates Carlos Gallinar, Veronica Carbajal and Oscar Leeser.

Svarzbein released a statement. The following is an excerpt of the Svarzbein statement:

“While discussing the item, a comment made by Mayor Margo described my attempt to enhance our ability as a City to save lives as a ‘Gestapo tactic’.” Svarzbein’s statement added, “I find it deeply hurtful that my policy approach was associated with a dark force that sought to exterminate my family.”

The full statement can be downloaded below.

The El Paso Politics did not receive a response from Dee Margo, Carlos Gallinar, Veronica Carbajal or Oscar Leeser.

Martin Paredes

Reporting on public corruption, border politics, immigration and public policy in El Paso since 2000.