“Restore sanity” and “Return to Reaganism” is the message Tuesday from Missouri U.S. Senate candidate Dave Schatz after fellow Republican Eric Greitens released a controversial campaign ad.
Schatz, of eastern Missouri’s Sullivan, has launched a statewide tour in response to the video.
“These are not things that we can take in this environment lightly. Again, anyone that is serious about running for this job should know how that ad is going to be portrayed, how it’s going to be received, and how that could incite someone to violence. And so, there’s no joke about that. I think it was done specifically for the shock and awe factor to pander to a particular audience he’s trying to attract. I don’t think he can play it off as anything other than that,” said Schatz, the Missouri Senate President.
In the video, Greitens, who is also running for U.S. Senate, is with masked people armed with shotguns and tactical gear. He says they are going “RINO hunting” and encouraging people to get their RINO hunting permit. RINO is an acronym for “Republican In Name Only”, a disparaging term to describe a politician whose political views are considered not conservative enough.
Facebook has taken down the ad for violating its rules and Twitter has tagged it as abusive.
On KCMO Radio in Kansas City, Greitens said people should understand that despite being armed and having an explosive, he does not really mean he’s going to kill his political enemies. He said the video was “clearly a metaphor” and it’s entertaining to watch the “faux outrage of liberals and RINO snowflakes”.
Schatz said Greitens has a “blinding ambition, and obsession with attention grabbing self-promoting stunts.”
“Reagan called for peace among Republicans,” he said. “Greitens is calling for war. Secondly, we must also get back to the ideals of Reaganism where we judge ideas by their merit and politicians by their records and conservative results rather than their stunts and their gimmicks.”
Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt, who is also running for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate, had this to say about the Greitens video:
Official statement from @Eric_Schmitt’s U.S. Senate campaign on Eric Greitens’ new video: 🙄#MOSEN
— Team Schmitt for US Senate (@Schmitt4Senate) June 20, 2022
Missourinet contacted the state Republican Party multiple times for a comment.
When asked what Schatz thinks of Schmitt’s response to the video and the Missouri Republican Party not giving a response, Schatz said it’s disappointing.
“I believe it’s time that we had somebody here with common sense that really addresses these issues and call things as they are,” he said. “For the Attorney General, his emoji to roll his eyes on this thing, obviously again he’s still pandering that same audience he’s trying to attract. And that’s the problem is that we need to reject this nonsense, and any good conservative or any politician should reject the inciting violence against fellow Republicans or any politician.”
He called on Greitens to drop out of the race.
“This has been bizarre behavior. It’s consistent with what we’ve witnessed and Eric Greitens since I first met him. I said it then, I say it now, Eric Greitens was unfit for governor. He’s unfit to be a U.S. senator. Eric Greitens’ politics of hate and division will never get our country back on track for real Missourians,” said Schatz. “And lastly, for the betterment of our state and country, most importantly for his family, he should seek the help he so clearly needs.”
Schatz’s tour also includes stops in St. Louis, Kansas City and Springfield over the next couple of days.
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