A controversial giveaway has sparked several death threats on social media against Missouri Republican U.S. Senate candidate Austin Petersen. During a podcast on Missourinet affiliate KZRG in Joplin, Petersen says the threats center around his giveaway of a device that can make untraceable guns. They were made in response to a Huffington Post article about the campaign tactic.
“There’s lots of ‘I hope you get shot in the face,’” Petersen says during a podcast at Bric’s Belgium Waffle and Pancake House in Ozark. “Yeah they hope that I get my head blown off, things like that.”
Petersen says every American has the right to manufacture at least one gun without serial numbers.
“Just because I’m giving away a little milling machine. What are people upset about? It’s a lathe and a drill,” he says. “Just because the call it the Ghost Gunner 2. Just because you can manufacture your own AR-15s without a serial number, which is perfectly legal. The problem is, is that people who want to regulate guns are usually the people who know the least about them.”
Petersen’s campaign has not contacted law enforcement about the threats.
Last year, Petersen was temporarily suspended from Facebook for raffling off an AR-15, which is a violation of the social media company’s rules.
Petersen is among 11 Republican candidates in next Tuesday’s Missouri primary election hoping to unseat Democratic incumbent Claire McCaskill in November.
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