LINDEN — An elected Board of Education member and retired school administrator has apologized two weeks after calling U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris a prostitute on a public social media post.

Gregory Martucci first shared a board announcement to the “I Grew up in Linden” Facebook group on June 8, hours before commenting on a different post in the same public group that Harris was a “street walker” — which is defined as a prostitute — right off the “wingnut streets” of San Francisco.

"I would ask the public to be open to receive my heartfelt apology. This was an 'offensive' comment which does not reflect who I am in both my private and public lives," Martucci said in a written statement to the Townsquare News Network on Tuesday.

"My actions to this point have always reflected a positive support for all women and for all cultures.I assure you that I will continue to support all women and all cultures," he said.

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Linden Superintendent of Schools Marnie Hazelton said the board would be "reviewing this matter" when asked about Martucci's comment.

Linden Board of Ed Martucci
Linden Board of Education member calls VP Harris a 'street walker' (Facebook via "I Grew Up in Linden group")

The public Facebook group draws a variety of community information interspersed with politically-charged memes and other posts, as seen by a timeline review.

All posts had still been live as of Tuesday morning.

"I would ask each of you to be receptive to my public apology and sincere regret for this injurious comment. There will be no further explanation or comment from me," Martucci also said in his response to New Jersey 101.5.

Martucci was board president in 2019 when he talked about his veteran educator status to Union News Daily.

“I have 47 years in education. I started teaching here from 1969 to, I just retired two years ago. I know education and I have been an administrator in the elementary schools, middle schools, the high school here. And, I know education. Education is my life,” Martucci was quoted as saying.

A follow up post from Martucci to the same Facebook group later on June 8 included a meme with the quote “If the truth shall kill them, let them die.”

That meme incorrectly attributed it as a direct quote by German philosopher Emmanuel Kant, when it was actually said by Ayn Rand who was paraphrasing a theory of Kant.

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