A right-wing Austrian politician who may yet be the country’s president has called for the demolition of Adolf Hitler’s first home. The Nazi leader was born in 1889 in a yellow-brick house on a street in the northern Austrian village of Braunau am Inn. This year, authorities in Vienna pushed through legislation to forcibly expropriate the building from its owner, out of growing fears that it was becoming a place of pilgrimage for neo-Nazis.

Norbert Hofer, a far-right presidential candidate who is slated to contest elections once more after an earlier vote was ruled out for “procedural irregularities,” added to the growing chorus urging the site’s destruction. It’s particularly pointed given that one of the original leaders of his anti-immigrant, ultranationalist Freedom Party was a former SS officer and Nazi functionary.

“Well, the only options are turning (the site) into a memorial or tearing it down,” Hofer told the Austria Press Agency. “If you ask me, I would be for demolishing it.”

The statement is seen as an attempt to build bridges with Austria’s tiny Jewish community and soften the image of the far right, which has won considerable popular support by grandstanding over fears of Muslim immigration. But, according to Agence France-Presse, Hofer, if elected, will scrap the tradition of hosting an annual dinner marking the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan at the presidential palace. The position of president in Austria is largely symbolic, but the prospect of a politician from a party espousing such views winning the post sent shock waves across Europe.

Earlier this year, Austria’s Interior Minister Wolfgang Sobotka already signaled his desire to have the house torn down. The government had been renting the building from its owner since 1972, using it as a public center for the disabled. But the owner’s recent refusals to renovate the site led the building to be abandoned in 2011.