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Controversial aide resigns from Sen. Paul’s staff

A close aide to Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., who co-authored the senator's 2011 book has stepped down following weeks of controversy over his decade-long career as a pro-Confederate shock jock and secession advocate after the Washington Free Beacon reported on his provocative statements. 

Paul family insider and social media director Jack Hunter announced his resignation in an email to the Daily Caller on Sunday. 

"I've long been a conservative, and years ago, a much more politically incorrect (and campy) one," Hunter told the Daily Caller. "But there's a significant difference between being politically incorrect and racist. I've also become far more libertarian over the years, a philosophy that encourages a more tolerant worldview, through the lens of which I now look back on some of my older comments with embarrassment." 

In the days leading up to Hunter's resignation, the Free Beacon had been reaching out to sources regarding previously unreported radio recordings in which Hunter called Abraham Lincoln "the American Hitler," joked that he would like to see the president of the NAACP tied to a tree and whipped, and alleged that black and Hispanic advocacy groups are more loyal to their races than to America. 

Paul's office did not immediately respond to requests for the details surrounding Hunter's departure. But Hunter told the Free Beacon he chose to leave and was not forced out. 

Click for more from The Washington Free Beacon.