The Kansas Republican Party is distancing itself from its Kansas Republican 3rd Congressional District Committee vice chairman after he tweeted that Americans had a “duty” to use firearms to “offend” Muslims.
Gavin Ellzey admitted to the Kansas City Star that he had tweeted: “Offending Muslims is the duty of any civilized person. Especially with a .45.”
He said the sentiment was in response to reports that Christians were being “crucified” in the Middle East. But he later deleted the Twitter message after he began receiving phone calls about it.
“Sometimes you overreact,” Ellzey explained. “I’m not trying to offend anybody. I sure wouldn’t shoot anybody. I don’t even own a gun.”
In a statement obtained by KSHB, Kansas Republican Party Executive Director Clay Barker disavowed Ellzey’s remarks.
“The Kansas Republican Party has no responsibility for or connection to the public statements of private citizens who perform occasional volunteer work for the Party,” the statement read. “The Republican Party in no way shares Mr. Ellzey’s sentiment.”
Ahsan Latif, who is president of the interfaith Crescent Peace Society, told KSHB that he was disturbed that someone “who has a role in the Republican Party would say something like that.”
“This is something that is published by a respected member of that community, the GOP, who has found himself in a leadership position and if he is advocating for violence against Muslims, it really, really makes me wonder what could happen,” Latif pointed out.