A Republican candidate for township trustee in Ohio is drawing criticism for the Halloween display in his front yard -- which includes the names of his political opponents on the tombstones.


Royal Barber told Fox News on Thursday, "I really didn't do it for the publicity. I thought it would just be a funny and amusing thing for Halloween."

Barber did admit, however, "I am a Republican and the two candidates that first said they were offended by it are Democrat and Independent. I think that's why the publicity was brought into it."

The strongest complaints appear to have come from one of Barber's rivals, Kevin Eff, who told the New York Daily News, "I found it very juvenile. My wife absolutely freaked out."

Eff also complained to the Toledo Blade, saying, "At the very least, it was just distasteful. The Sylvania community faces some very serious issues, and we need serious leaders to face them."

Barber says he immediately complied with Eff's wishes by painting over his name and replacing it with an asterisk.

In contrast, another of the candidates honored by Barber, Penny Levine, told the Blade that she had gone to see the display after friends told her it was offensive, "but when I got there and saw what it was, I just burst out laughing."

"I think it's funny in a sense," Levine added, "but sad that he put so much time into it instead of running his own campaign and learning about the township."

Barber says he has no intention of taking the tombstones down. "It's nonstop traffic on my street," he says. "Everyone's coming to see what the fuss is about."

This video is from Fox News' Fox & Friends, broadcast Oct. 8, 2009.


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