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GOP Lawmaker in Yorktown, N.Y., Resigns After Caught Uttering Racial Slur Against Former Indian American Councilman

GOP Lawmaker in Yorktown, N.Y., Resigns After Caught Uttering Racial Slur Against Former Indian American Councilman

  • Tom Pomposello was seen on video on Nov. 2, uttering a hateful ethnic remark against Councilman Vishnu Patel, who lost his bid for a fourth four-year term on the Town Board.

A Republican lawmaker in Yorktown, New York, has resigned after he was found using a racial slur against an Indian American former councilman during a GOP victory celebration earlier this month. The apology came after Tom Pomposello was caught on video on Nov. 2, uttering a hateful ethnic remark against Councilman Vishnu Patel, who lost his bid for a fourth four-year term on the Town Board, The Examiner News reported. “Vishnu’s gone. Gone. Gone,” Pomposello can be heard saying in a short clip uploaded on YouTube. “That motherf—-r. That f—–g sand n——r.”

In an interview with The Examiner News, Pomposello said he regrets the pain his comments caused Patel and has reached out to apologize. He said he was “mumbling to himself” when his derogatory comments were captured. “It was a lack of judgement,” he told The Examiner News. “I’m embarrassed for myself, my family, my town. It’s the stupidest thing I have ever said in my life,” he said. “I’m in a bad way with this. I know I’m a little rough around the edges, but there’s no excuse for what I did. Vishnu has done a lot of great things for this town.”


Although Patel confirmed the apology to The Examiner News, he expressed no desire to speak with Pomposello. He told the paper that he’s been targeted with racial attacks at times since he was first elected in 2009. “It is not surprising that one individual at a Republican gathering should shout out a vile obscene remark about my nationality,” he said about Pomposello’s remarks. “Donald Trump’s behavior as president gave permission for the worst elements in the Republican Party to say and do things openly that they would never have dared to in the past.”

Patel received an apology from Yorktown Republican Committee Chairman Kevin Byrnes. “On behalf of the Yorktown Republican Town Committee, I would again like to offer an apology to Councilman Patel and anyone else who was unfortunate enough to view this video and hear the despicable comments,” read the statement according to The Examiner News report. “Comments like these are unacceptable and do not reflect the values of Yorktown.”

Before joining the township, Patel worked at IBM for 36 years before retiring in 2009. has more than 65 issued patents and has co-authored 80 publications. He has been honored with the IBM Research Division Award, the IBM Outstanding Innovation Award, the IBM Research Division Master Inventor position, an IBM Research Division Award, and an IBM Extraordinary Technical Accomplishment Award.

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During his three terms as councilman, Patel served on many committees: community housing, energy advisory, utilities oversight, senior citizens advisory, and tree conservation. Over the years, he provided computers to the science lab at the high school and to the senior center in Yorktown. 

Patel received a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry and physics from Gujarat University, India, and a Master’s degree in organic chemistry from the University of the Pacific in California.

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