Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) compared the U.S. government to Nazi Germany on Monday over a federal judge's decision that a family that discovered 10 rare gold coins "not legally removed from the United States Mint" could not keep them.
"Well it's sort of like the Nazis taking paintings from Jewish families during the war and saying, 'Oh you don't get them back.' Well, they're yours. They're still yours even if they find it 60 years later. It's the same thing with these coins," Paul told Fox News' Sean Hannity.
Paul's office did not respond to a request for comment.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, a Philadelphia-based federal judge upheld a 2011 jury decision that Joan Langbord and her two sons could not keep the 10 "double-eagle" coins, worth about $7.6 million each.
The Langbords have vowed to appeal the decision, saying the government cannot prove that her late father, Israel Swift, a coin dealer who "had long been suspected by the government of secretly obtaining 1933 double eagles from a mint employee," stole the coins.
"The disputed double eagles were not lawfully removed from the United States Mint and ... remain the property of the United States," U.S. District Judge Legrome D. Davis wrote in his Aug. 29 judgment, upholding the July 2011 decision of a federal court jury.
Paul's comments came just hours after Politico reported that Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R-Md.) suggested a parallel between the PATRIOT Act and Nazi Germany in two town hall meetings with constituents.
"If you can ignore the Constitution to do what you consider good things today, tomorrow you can ignore the Constitution to do bad things," Bartlett said. "More than half of our people in this country are of German descent. How in the heck - I know those people! How could the Holocaust have happened? These are the same German bloodlines that represent the biggest ethnic group in our country today. It's just, if you start down a slippery slope, you could end up doing that kind of thing."
The two GOP commentaries followed on the heels of three instances over the past week in which Democratic officials committed the same offense.
South Carolina Democratic Party Chairman Dick Harpootlian compared the GOP Gov. Nikki Haley to Adolf Hitler's wife, Eva Braun, in remarks to a delegation breakfast at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., according to the State newspaper of Columbia, S.C.
Pat Lehman, a Democratic delegate to the convention from Kansas, compared Mitt Romney's campaign talking points to the "big lie" strategy used by the Nazis, according to a report by the Wichita Eagle.
And California Democratic Party Chairman John Burton compared the convention speech by Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, the Republican vice presidential nominee, to the tactics of Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels.
"They lie and they don't care if people think they lie. ... Joseph Goebbels - the big lie, you keep repeating it," Burton said in an interview with San Francisco station KCBS. "That was Goebbels, the big lie."