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American Opinion: Hunting humans: Ludicrous Eric Greitens hits a new low targeting fellow Republicans

Summary: With the primary now just weeks away, the lack of a real discussion of issues is stunning, and depressing. It’s beyond comprehension that Missouri voters would consider a Eric Greitens who resigned his office in disgrace under so many clouds. He shouldn’t get near any elected office, or any position of responsibility.

Former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens in 2018. He's seeking the Republican nomination for an open U.S. Senate seat.
Former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens in 2018. He's seeking the Republican nomination for an open U.S. Senate seat.
(Laurie Skrivan/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/TNS)
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Missourians have long been accustomed to boorish behavior from Eric Greitens, the disgraced former governor credibly accused of tying up and forcing a woman to perform oral sex on him, in addition to charges of major campaign finance violations. He resigned in dishonor after those allegations surfaced. Later, his ex-wife alleged he had also abused her and their children, even knocking one of their sons’ tooth loose .

But the state will still be outraged by Greitens’ latest stupidity: a commercial produced to support his candidacy for the U.S. Senate.

In the video , Greitens introduces himself as a Navy SEAL, which is misleading enough. He’s a civilian whose service in the Navy remains highly controversial .

He’s carrying a weapon, which is terrifying too. “Today, we’re going RINO hunting,” Greitens says.

What follows is deeply appalling in any context, let alone in the days following gun massacres in Uvalde, Texas , and Buffalo, New York. The candidate is surrounded by anonymous figures dressed in what appear to be military camouflage uniforms.

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The squad bashes down a door. Someone tosses a flash-bang grenade. Greitens walks through the door, into the smoke.

“Join the MAGA crew,” he says. “Getting a RINO hunting permit. There’s no bagging limit, and no tagging limit.” RINO, of course, refers to "Republicans in name only."

Is Eric Greitens seriously suggesting his political critics should be shot dead? Murdered without consequence? It sure seems that way.

“It’s fanatically un-American to call for assassinating your political enemies, and doing so is dangerous in today’s political climate and disqualifying for any candidate seeking elected office,” Missouri state Sen. Lauren Arthur said in a tweet .

“If he gets through the primary, Eric Greitens will be the most embarrassing major party candidate in a statewide race since David Duke,” said Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas .

That sounds right to us. That Greitens would consider such a video during the Jan. 6 congressional hearings on actual political violence is grotesque.

The Republican primary for the Senate seat now occupied by Roy Blunt has been an unqualified disaster. Eric Schmitt, the state’s attorney general, beclowns himself on an hourly basis, filing frivolous and costly lawsuits for political motives. He’s a disgrace.

Rep. Vicky Hartzler has based her campaign on gender bigotry and scare tactics. She criticized any effort to restrict guns before the blood had been cleaned from the floor in Uvalde.

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Other Republican candidates have been harder to hear, or see. Naturally, they have no chance.

Now, Greitens hints at homicide.

Missourians have not been well-served by this ridiculousness. The nation faces serious problems, and needs a reasonable debate among candidates for the Senate. A Republican who approaches the race with the seriousness it deserves should get a hearing from voters, and would deserve it.

With the primary now just weeks away, the lack of a real discussion of issues is stunning, and depressing. It’s beyond comprehension that Missouri voters would consider a man who resigned his office in disgrace under so many clouds. He shouldn’t get near any elected office, or any position of responsibility.

He’s also a coward. He’s a tough guy with a gun on TV, but ducks every debate and every legitimate press interview. He’s accused of beating his wife and children . He stole veterans’ honor by falsely suggesting to Stephen Colbert that he helped kill Osama bin Laden . Missouri voters should send him to the ash heap of history, where he belongs.

This American Opinion editorial is the opinion of the editorial board of The Kansas City Star.

©2022 The Kansas City Star. Visit kansascity.com . Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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