CONCORD, N.H. — A New Hampshire lawmaker has apologized for shouting the Nazi salute “Sieg Heil!” during debate on a voter-identification bill.

Speaker William O’Brien ordered Manchester Republican Steve Vaillancourt removed from the House chambers today.

Vaillancourt made the comment after O’Brien stopped debate on the bill.

A debate then ensued over whether Vaillancourt should be allowed back. Several lawmakers called his remarks inflammatory.

The House voted to allow him back into the chamber once he apologized. But when Vaillancourt spoke, he insisted he did not say anything about Nazi leader Adolf Hitler. His apology wasn’t accepted.

O’Brien appointed a committee to talk to Vaillancourt over the form of the apology. After two more tries, the apology was accepted.

“Sieg Heil,” which means “Hail Victory,” was a common chant at Hitler’s rallies.

According to his official House of Representatives page, Vaillacourt lived and studied in Berlin, Germany in the early 1990s.

Vaillancourt said O’Brien was acting autocratic, according to WMUR-TV, and felt the need to speak out.

“It’s about time we rise up and say, ‘No more tyranny. No more autocracy,'” Vaillancourt told the television station.

Vaillancourt later told the ConcordPatch website he chose his words poorly.

“I do apologize for using two German words, which I understand has negative ramifications when three Latin words would have been better,” Valliancourt said. “I will never use a German word again.”

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