Rep. Andy Smith gives statement on X account deletion, alleged arson joke

Controversial Social Media Post from Rep. Smith

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(ABC 6 News) – Rep. Andy Smith of Rochester made a statement about his Twitter account deletion last week, following accusations that he had joked about a suspicious fire at an office building in Golden Valley, MN.

The office building hosts multiple conservative political groups.

Smith’s statement is as follows:

“I am against political violence and the continued polarization in our political atmosphere. My tweet was not a commentary on the fire or potential arson, but rather the irresponsible way far-right organizations discussed the fire before the investigation’s findings were released. I’ll echo the words of Governor Tim Walz, ‘Political violence and intimidation have no place in Minnesota. I’m confident that local, state, and federal law enforcement will get to the bottom of this unacceptable act.'”


(ABC 6 News) – Rochester DFL Representative Andy Smith deleted his Twitter account, allegedly after receiving backlash for joking about an arson investigation.

Investigators are looking into a suspicious fire that happened at an office building in Golden Valley, Minn. They have said they are looking into a possible arsonist behind the blaze.

The office building hosts multiple conservative groups inside the facility.

Conservative groups say they were the victims of arson.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives says they are not ready to make the determination that the conservative offices were targeted.

Smith posted a .gif from the sitcom The Office, joking about who started the fire. The post received some backlash with many calling it insenstive.

CD 1 MNGOP Chairman Aaron Farris released the following statement:

“It’s disgusting, yet not shocking to see this type of repulsive behavior from Representative Smith. Making light of an act of political violence is wrong, contradictory to what should be a common desire to reduce political divisiveness in America, and unbecoming of someone who claims to represent Minnesotans. The Republican Party condemns political violence of any kind, and we call on voters to hold Andy Smith accountable this November. Rochester can do much, much better.”

Smith has since deleted his account.