A campaign advertisement recently put out by Estakio Beltran, a Democrat running for Washington's 4th Congressional House seat, shows the candidate shooting an elephant piñata on his way to Washington, Truth Revolt reported Friday. What makes the choice interesting is that the elephant is the symbol of the Republican Party.
“They call me a long shot. They say I can’t win in this district," Beltran says in the ad. "But what happens to an elephant that stands around doing nothing for too long?”
He then takes aim and shoots the elephant. The ad shows the elephant reeling before falling over, presumably dead.
"My name is Estakio Beltran," he says in the ad as he chambers another round in his pump shotgun. "And I approve this message."
The ad then features more shotgun blasts as it displays what Beltran believes are his basic qualifications for the office -- including being a "good shot." He is then seen riding a donkey -- the symbol of the Democratic Party -- past a sign pointing the way to Washington, D.C.
According to his campaign website, Beltran “graduated with a dual degree in Psychology and Communications in 2005 and took a job as Assistant to Senator Maria Cantwell in her Washington, D.C. office. In 2007, he moved to the office of Congressman Dennis Cardoza (D-CA), where he served as Senior Legislative and Child Welfare Policy Advisor, as well as liaison to the Hispanic Caucus. He went on to pursue a Master’s in Public Administration from Columbia University in New York City.”
There is no question that Beltran knows the violent imagery will appeal to his base. But it also raises some questions.
Does Beltran really want to shoot Republicans as the ad suggests? And would he be okay with a similar ad put out by a Republican?
The Daily Caller noted that Republicans have come under fire for rhetoric similar to that used by Beltran. But it seems that for some, violent imagery depicting the death of Republicans is perfectly okay.
"Most prominently was former Republican Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin who received heavy push-back for a map created by her political action committee which used gun sights to mark political races in which it was involved," Chuck Ross said.
The Daily Caller said Beltran's campaign did not respond to requests for comments. Washington's 4th Congressional District is currently represented by Republican Doc Hastings, who is set to retire.
Video of the ad can be seen above. What do you think? Is this an appropriate ad given the Democrats stated concerns of gun violence?