Washington candidate removes shotgun-blast ad - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Washington candidate removes shotgun-blast ad

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RICHLAND, Wash. (AP) - A Democrat running for Congress in conservative central Washington has removed an online campaign video that showed him blasting an elephant-shaped piñata with a shotgun.

The Tri-City Herald reports that the advertisement generated a lot of criticism, including from a group founded former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, the Arizona Democrat who survived a gunshot wound to the head in 2011. The group called it "irresponsible and offensive," and said it "furthers the lack of balance in our nation's debate about guns."

The campaign removed the video from Youtube on Saturday. In a statement emailed to The Associated Press, spokesman Grady O'Brien said the purpose of the ad was to call attention to a "do-nothing Congress," and that it's time to focus on issues important to the voters.

The 30-year-old Beltran is one of a dozen candidates running to replace retiring Republican Rep. Doc Hastings in the 4th District, which covers much of central Washington. The primary will be held Aug. 5.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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