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Republican Brandon Martin is running for Congress in Arizona, hoping to beat out Democratic incumbent Ann Kirkpatrick after her first term. Like any candidate, Martin is sending out fundraising emails to his supporters, hoping to raise enough money for a successful campaign. What really set him apart though are the thinly veiled threats of murder.

How many gun metaphors can a fella fit into a fundraising email? At least three, by my count.

Via Tucson.com (emphasis mine):

"Ann Kirkpatrick sits on the Appropriations Committee. ($$ Big money donations $$) She's going to have a war chest in November 2020. I need 'ammunition' to remove her from office," Martin wrote. "Will you load me up with a donation of $5, $10, $25 or more so I can train my sights on Ann Kirkpatrick and remove her from office in 2020?"

Under any circumstances, this many references to shooting one's political opponent would be in poor taste — but it's particularly gross in this one, considering that the seat Martin is vying for once belonged to Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, whom you may recall had to give up her seat on account of actually being shot.


This coincidence was pointed out by Kirkpatrick's team after they found out about the email.

Alex Alvarez, a Kirkpatrick campaign spokesman, said Martin went too far.

"Threatening gun violence is disqualifying for anyone seeking to represent Arizona's 2nd district," said Alvarez. "For Southern Arizona, gun violence is personal. In just 19.6 seconds, 33 bullets were fired at a congressional event in Tucson hosted by Rep. Gabby Giffords. She and her district director, Ron Barber, were shot, alongside 17 others, six of them murdered."

For his part, Martin is simply shocked to hear that Kirkpatrick, her team, and anyone with eyeballs and the ability to read the English language would think that this email sounded like it was encouraging gun violence:

"Ann Kirkpatrick's claim that my fundraising email is 'threatening' or promotes 'violence' is just that, a claim. Any reasonably intelligent person, which I can now only assume Ann is not, would understand that 'ammunition' is clearly a euphemism for monetary campaign contributions," Martin said. "I noted she did not bother to call attention to the portion of my email where I made it clear I wanted to 'politically remove her from office.'"

We all know what euphemisms are! We know what metaphors are! It is very obvious that Martin was not literally suggesting that someone go out and murder Ann Kirkpatrick, and instead was just hoping to excite his gun-happy base and get them to send him money. As a legitimate threat, it is even less realistic than the cardboard cutout of Donald Trump Martin appears to takes with him everywhere he goes.

Brian Martin Facebook

It's sort of like making a joke about "drinking the Kool-Aid" to someone whose family you know was in Jonestown and then going "What? It's a euphemism! Don't you know what a euphemism is?"

But you know what? It's not really a thing that is cute or funny or poetic when we actually do have a bit of a problem with mass shootings in this country and when you are talking about the woman currently occupying the congressional seat of another woman who was, in fact, shot by a lunatic. You of the long memory will recall the mass shooting took place after Giffords went on TV to complain about Sarah Palin (blast from the past) putting out a map with "surveyor's marks" (which looked an awful lot like gunsights) over Giffords's district. Here's what Giffords said at the time: "We're on Sarah Palin's targeted list, but the thing is that the way that she has it depicted has the crosshairs of a gun sight over our district, and when people do that, they've got to realize there are consequences to that action."

It is entirely possible that Martin is not himself "a reasonably intelligent person" and therefore did not consider how something like this might read in this time and that place. But we're going to go with, "he's terrible."

[Tuscon.com]

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Robyn Pennacchia

Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Previously, she was a Senior Staff Writer at Death & Taxes, and Assistant Editor at The Frisky (RIP). Currently, she writes for Wonkette, Friendly Atheist, Quartz and other sites. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse

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