It turns out that America’s tax authority isn’t as bad as the Nazis’ secret police.

Maine Governor Paul LePage apologized on Monday for suggesting that it is, reaching out in particular to “the Jewish Community” following inflammatory comments about President Obama’s health-care overhaul. The apology, posted on the governor’s website, followed a weekend radio address in which LePage told listeners, “You must buy health insurance or pay the new Gestapo — the IRS.”

Criticized by local Democrats, the Republican LePage backtracked on Monday, writing, “It was not my intent to insult anyone, especially the Jewish Community, or minimize the fact that millions of people were murdered.”

While LePage is hardly the only politician to use Nazi rhetoric, his clarification is nevertheless appreciated. Collecting taxes from citizens of a democracy is not, fortunately, the same as rounding up victims of a genocidal police state. It’s always good to get a reminder.