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Slavery, Holocaust never OK as political fodder

Sunday - 3/24/2013, 10:58am  ET

AP Political Writer

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- Ken Cuccinelli learned last week that it's foolhardy to invoke slavery to make a political point.

The presumptive Republican gubernatorial nominee set off a furor when video surfaced of him comparing the 19th century abolition struggle that triggered the nation's deadliest war with today's anti-abortion movement.

Issues like slavery and the Holocaust are perilous for politicians. They inflame emotions, send political consultants into a panicky tizzy and can lose elections.

In 2005, just the mention of Adolf Hitler in a television ad that Republican Jerry Kilgore never even aired signaled a floundering gubernatorial campaign's last gasp.

But Cuccinelli at least got his history right in addressing religious conservatives last June, saying the slavery abolition movement took root and grew among Christian evangelicals in the North.

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