The Arizona Democratic Party chair demanded an apology after the state’s GOP party delivered a Wild West-style “Wanted” poster of Democratic Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick to her office.
The Democrats took the most offense to the bullet holes on the poster, citing the 2011 shooting of former Rep. Gabby Giffords in Tucson. In a statement, the Democrats called the poster a “disgusting and desperate” attempt to help Sen. John McCain, who is running against Kirkpatrick for a senate seat.
“I’m dumbstruck by the inexcusable lack of judgment displayed by the AZGOP,” said Arizona Democratic Party chair Alexis Tameron in the release.
State GOP spokesman Matt Specht disputed that the wanted poster depicted bullet holes and said it was just an old-fashioned weathered image from the Old West.
The poster reads: “Wanted, absentee Ann Kirkpatrick, last seen: running from constituents who want to hold her accountable.”
“Arizonans have witnessed, firsthand, how inciteful rhetoric and imagery can influence acts of aggression and violence towards elected officials,” Tameron continued in her statement.
“Today’s political stunt by the Arizona Republican Party illustrates not only a lack of judgment, but a complete disregard of the tragedy that traumatized so many Arizonans on January 8, 2011. AZGOP Chairman Robert Graham and Sen. John McCain should immediately apologize and condemn this display for what it is: a painful and tasteless political act that is unworthy of our politics.”
The Republicans released the poster with a press statement on Thursday.
“Afraid that Arizonans won’t ‘want’ her in the U.S. Senate if they learn more about her record and positions, Ann Kirkpatrick has been hiding out,” Arizona Republican Party chairman Robert Graham wrote in the statement.
“Arizona voters with information on Ann Kirkpatrick’s whereabouts are urged to ask her if Obamacare is still her proudest vote. Please approach with caution, as Kirkpatrick has been known to flee voters when asked tough questions. Kirkpatrick’s known associates include President Obama and Hillary Clinton.”
The poster was critical of Kirkpatrick’s support for Obamacare and the “reckless” Iran deal. It also said she was “avoiding voters at all costs.”