A billboard featuring a picture of Donald Trump and the slogan, “Our Leader The Idiot,” appeared in Union Township, New Jersey, last week sparking a flood of angry phone calls and social media posts from local residents. But after staying in place for a week, the billboard finally disappeared on Wednesday, according to the local cable news channel News12 New Jersey. While the local government there called the billboard “potentially offensive,” Union Township officials said the town had no authority to remove a private billboard.
The company that owns the billboard space, OutFront Media, was responsible for removing the “Idiot” Trump billboard, according to a report by The Hill.
But the activist who says he paid $1,000 of his own case to put up the billboard, which he said was designed to promote an upcoming documentary film also titled Our Leader The Idiot, told a local radio station that the company broke a contract with him that called for the billboard to remain in place for 30 days. Neil Harrison paid for the billboard to be posted August 22, the day after Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort was convicted of eight tax and bank fraud felonies, and Trump’s ex-lawyer Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to eight felonies of his own, as the Inquisitr reported.
— News12NJ (@News12NJ) August 22, 2018
“I was quite agitated. I understand where they’re coming from but my statement stands, ‘I’m an American and I’m a business guy. I believe in honoring contracts,'” Harrison said, as quoted by Newsweek.
“Manafort was convicted. ‘Cohen’s giving up everything he can, and we’re hoping that Trump is next. Basically that’s what we are out here for. I’m an activist and that’s what I do. And we’re trying to drum up some real support here’ for the documentary,” Harrison said, according to The New York Post, explaining his motivation for buying the billboard space for his “Our Leader The Idiot” message. He said that he chose Union Township, New Jersey, after learning that New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority has a policy preventing political billboard messages.
The Union Township government said that voicemails and Facebook messages about the billboard were “overwhelmingly negative,” though not all messages opposed the billboard.
“Keep the billboard, obviously. Would like more towns to have such billboards. Should make it a social embarrassment to support this evil administration,” wrote one commenter on the town’s official Facebook page.
Another comment read, “The town is a disgrace allowing a billboard to be put up the disrespect the president I wonder what they would have said if that was a billboard about Obama.”
Harrison said that he is consulting a lawyer about the billboard’s removal and has rejected OutFront Media’s offer to refund his money on a pro-rated basis for the remainder of the 30-day period.