Gun control activists hammered Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) for the optics of a shotgun giveaway sponsored by his re-election campaign, according to Politico.
The giveaway contest began May 1 but became a target of a gun control group's outrage after 10 people were killed by a gunman using a shotgun at Santa Fe High School in Texas on Friday morning.
"I find this giveaway deeply disturbing for a number of reasons, chiefly among them the fact that Friday's shooting at Santa Fe HS was carried out with a shotgun," Jack Kappelman told Politico. Kappelman is a student organizer for the Austin, Texas, branch of March for Our Lives.
The governor's re-election campaign was holding a giveaway contest for a "Texas-made shotgun," which featured a picture of Abbott aiming a shotgun.
March For Our Lives - Austin blasted the governor on Twitter for the contest, not acknowledging that the contest preceded and was unrelated to the tragedy in Santa Fe.
The group posted on Twitter:
We demand you take down the Texas-made shotgun raffle and make a formal apology to your constituents. To put it bluntly, we find this a disgusting display of disregard of the toll gun violence takes and an absolute failure to respect your constituents in the wake of the #SantaFe shootings.
It is acts like these that greatly affect community practice and the perception of shotguns as simply a tool for entertainment while the brutal truth is that weapons like these are capable of incredible violence. We hold our elected officials to higher standards.
.@GregAbbott_TX We are disgusted by your “Win a Texas-Made Shotgun” raffle, especially in wake of the #SantaFe… https://t.co/vS0NMnNL4B— March For Our Lives - Austin (@March For Our Lives - Austin) 1526783003.0
What did one Democratic candidate say?
Democratic candidate for governor, Andrew White, took the opportunity to score some political points on Abbott.
"If nominated on May 22, I won't have to give away shotguns to get people to vote for me," wrote White, who faces a primary runoff election on Tuesday against former Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez.
If nominated on May 22, I won’t have to give away shotguns to get people to vote for me. Can you believe this? https://t.co/WzQ4jzNUzi— Andrew White (@Andrew White) 1526836721.0
A spokesman for Abbott's campaign said the contest was changed over the weekend to give the winner a $250 gift card. The picture of Abbott holding the gun was removed.
(H/T: The Hill)