A new campaign advertisement for Rep. Mo Brooks, a candidate for Senate in Alabama, is drawing the ire of many for its controversial use of the raw audio from the June 14 shooting that left Rep. Steve Scalise hospitalized.
In the advertisement, titled “Second Amendment,” a black screen is shown while the audio from the shooting, which took place at a morning baseball practice, is played. Gunshots can be heard and screams are audible as text in the video appears and says: “What’s the liberal media immediately ask?”
It flashes to an interview with Brooks, who notably used a belt as a tourniquet to stop a staffer from bleeding after he was shot in the calf. After the shooting, Brooks and Rep. Brad Wenstrup helped Scalise by putting pressure on his wound until he could be assisted by paramedics.
Brooks was asked by a reporter if the incident “changes your views on the gun situation in America.”
Brooks responds: “The Second Amendment, the right to bear arms, is to help ensure that we always have a republic. So no, I’m not changing my position on any of the rights that we enjoy as Americans.”
Watch the advertisement in the video below:
The advertisement has drawn criticism by many for politicizing a tragic event.
Scalise, the House Majority Whip, seemed to be one of those who wasn’t pleased with the use of the audio in the ad. His spokesman, in speaking to NBC News’ Alex Moe, said “some people have their own ideas about what’s appropriate.”
Brooks is running for the vacant Alabama Senate seat in a special election. He’s running against Republicans Roy Moore and Luther Strange in the primary along with six others. Strange was appointed to the seat after former Senator Jeff Sessions was appointed U.S. Attorney General.
Initially, the election was to coincide with the 2018 general election, but that was moved up to December 12, 2017. The primary is slated for August 15 while a runoff would take place September 26.
According to AL.com, “Moore has typically been at the top of polls, though polling indicates the race among the top three is close.”