North Carolina Republican Sen. Richard Burr has apologized after he privately joked about seeing Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton on the cover of a rifle magazine without a bull's-eye on her face.
Apparently referring to American Rifleman, the National Rife Association’s publication, Burr said “nothing made [him] feel any better” than when he saw Clinton on the cover, according to audio obtained by CNN.
“It’s got a picture of Hillary Clinton on the front of it. I was a little bit shocked that — it didn’t have the bull's-eye on it,” Burr said.
His remarks came during a get-out-the-vote meeting Saturday. And Burr, who is locked in a tight re-election race, has already apologized.
“The comment I made was inappropriate, and I apologize for it,” he said in a statement.
A campaign official added that Burr’s comment about feeling better was in regards to gun-rights groups supporting Republican candidates — not about a potential assassination of the former secretary of state.
Critics likened Burr's remarks to those made by Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump during an August ally in North Carolina, when he contended that Clinton plans to “abolish the Second Amendment” should she become president and insinuated that “Second Amendment people” could stop her.
Burr has only a one-point advantage over his opponent, Deborah Ross, according to Real Clear Politics' aggregated polling data.
In response to Burr's bullseye comment, Ross maintained that "unfortunately this is just the latest in a disturbing pattern of Senator Burr failing to represent North Carolina values."