Brad Staats might want just want to send a fruit basket next time.
The Republican U.S. Congressional candidate is defending a recent Facebook post of a picture of a gun along with a message that welcomes Pres. Barack Obama to Tennessee. The upside down picture of a Colt 911 semiautomatic pistol is captioned with Staats’ opinion regarding the Second Amendment.
“Apparently Tennesseans are part of that crazy crowd that Obama says ‘cling to their religion and guns.’ Well, then I must be part of that crazy crowd. Here is something that I usually have with me,” wrote Staats, referencing a comment Obama made during the 2008 campaign.
“Welcome to Tennessee Mr. Obama, where we appreciate our 2nd Amendment rights and the Constitution that was wisely given to us by our founding fathers,” he said. The post has garnered 51 likes, 18 shares, and plenty of controversy since it was posted Friday.
A spokesperson for the U.S. Secret Service said they are aware of the post and will investigate it if necessary.
Staats denied he was threatening Obama. He told the The Tennessean that the post wasn’t meant to be threatening. “He’s probably got enough of his own stuff to worry about without me,” he said.
The Facebook post was meant to be in reference to the a recently passed U.N. Small Arms Treaty, which some believe is a “complete ban” on firearms for U.S. citizens and acts as a legal way around the Second Amendment. However, that notion has been debunked by Snopes.
Although Staats’ denied threatening Obama, he has been vocal on his Facebook page slamming the president. On Monday, he asked if “our president is a traitor” while questioning Obama’s qualifications.
Photo via Brad Staats for Congress/Facebook