AZ GOP official wants to stop ‘gun-grabber’ Mark Kelly ‘dead in his tracks’

U.S. Senatorial candidate Mark Kelly, husband of former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords. Photo by Gage Skidmore license CC SA 2.0 via Flickr

Mark Kelly is a well-respected former NASA astronaut whose wife, former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was tragically shot in a 2011 mass shooting that killed six people. As such, he’s running on a platform pushing more effective gun control laws. He’s running as a Democrat in the 2020 Special Election in Arizona, so it should come as no surprise that Republicans in the state aren’t especially fond of him.

And some of them are being completely vile about it. Especially Kelli Ward, chair of the Arizona Republican Party, The New Civil Rights Movement reports.

“Support the Republican Party today and, together, we’ll stop gun-grabber Mark Kelly dead in his tracks, Ward wrote in a fundraising email.

That’s according to The Hill and HuffPost.

Kelly, who’s also a former Navy captain is running for the U.S. Senate seat that’s currently occupied by Martha McSally, who bested Ward in the primaries. Prior to that, the seat was held by the late Republican Senator, John McCain, who died last year.

And his campaign website, which advocates for gun safety notes:

“Arizona families regularly experience the tragedy of gun violence. Every year, the state sees an average of 244 gun homicides, 669 firearms suicides, 582 nonfatal shootings, and 553 accidental shootings.”

Kelly’s position on gun control is understandable. Giffords was shot in the head while meeting constituents in 2011 by a crazed gunman, The Washington Post reports. That’s why Ward’s email is so offensive. In order to recover Gifford was put into an induced coma to help her brain rest. She has gone through years of physical therapy and has had reconstructive surgery.

After the story broke, Ward refused to apologize for her offensive remarks and took to Twitter to claim they wrote “dishonest stories about me for clicks.”

In another tweet, she tried to backtrack:

In her email, Ward referred to a 2015 CNN interview with Kelly, Bloomberg reports. He argued more guns don’t make people safer. Obviously, that didn’t sit well with her and it should come as no surprise that she’s an avid supporter of President Donald Trump and the NRA. And like Trump and so many of his supporters, obvious racism doesn’t bother her. This became apparent after news surfaced that she was helped by a volunteer who had posted racist messages on social media, AZ Central reports.

And Ward’s tone-deaf comments come at a time when there have been 291 mass shootings in the U.S. so far this year, The Gun Violence Archive reports. Additionally, 10,157 Americans have been killed by guns this year. The U.S. is in a crisis of bloodshed due to mass shootings but Republicans respond with hand-wringing and hypocrisy (otherwise known as “thoughts and prayers”) and despite whatever problems the NRA is having it continues to hold entirely too much sway over politicians.

In an effort to enact more effective gun control Kelly and Giffords founded Americans for Responsible Solutions and Giffords, a non-profit dedicated to reducing gun violence. The only way to end the seemingly endless cycle of gun violence in the U.S. is to remove politicians like Ward from office and promote those who are advocating reform.

So when election time comes around in 2020, y’all know what to do.

Photo by Gage Skidmore license CC SA 2.0 via Flickr