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GOP congressional candidate defends AR-15 giveaway

A Kansas congressional hopeful said Monday that he's sticking by his campaign giveaway of an AR-15 rifle despite crit...

Posted: Feb 20, 2018 7:25 AM
Updated: Feb 20, 2018 7:25 AM

A Kansas congressional hopeful said Monday that he's sticking by his campaign giveaway of an AR-15 rifle despite criticism in light of last Wednesday's mass school shooting in Florida.

"We aren't using this to raise money," Tyler Tannahill told HLN's Carol Costello. "We had this planned over a month ago to kind of coincide with the Kansas Republican Convention."

The Republican candidate launched the giveaway along with his candidacy on February 13, a day before an AR-15-style rifle was used in the Parkland, Florida, massacre that left 17 people dead.

Tannahill said his campaign discussed if they should end the contest and decided to keep it going.

"We have to sit down and have these tough discussions," he said. "I'm a staunch believer in the Second Amendment, and I don't think those rights should be infringed, but how do we keep our children and teachers safe in schools?"

Costello interrupted: "You're saying these things, but you're giving away an AR-15 to bring attention to your campaign, at the very least."

John Fredericks, a conservative talk radio host in Virginia who was participating in the segment, also criticized Tannahill's giveaway, saying he felt it was "in really bad taste."

"Come on, man, it doesn't make any sense," Fredericks said. "You're not having a legitimate conversation when you're giving away an AR-15 for free."

Tannahill's campaign isn't the only assault rifle giveaway carrying on despite the Parkland shooting. The Kansas City Star reported on Saturday that third-graders will continue selling tickets for an AR-15 raffle in a baseball team fundraiser.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 266598

Reported Deaths: 5852
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto17928195
Hinds17030337
Harrison14510212
Rankin11315223
Jackson11054193
Lee9109147
Madison8663171
Jones6853120
Forrest6260125
Lauderdale6161196
Lowndes5582123
Lafayette5269101
Lamar508765
Washington4965125
Bolivar4164110
Oktibbeha411585
Panola389881
Pontotoc380460
Monroe3727111
Warren3716103
Marshall360172
Union360165
Pearl River3527106
Neshoba3516158
Leflore3132110
Lincoln308389
Hancock300963
Sunflower294277
Tate281862
Alcorn274055
Pike272984
Itawamba271263
Scott264055
Yazoo258456
Prentiss255454
Coahoma252455
Copiah251549
Tippah251551
Simpson244872
Leake238967
Marion228274
Covington224873
Grenada224673
Wayne216336
Adams216271
Winston208271
George206440
Newton201447
Attala197465
Tishomingo196361
Chickasaw190245
Jasper183138
Holmes172568
Clay168637
Tallahatchie158035
Stone153625
Clarke148762
Calhoun142022
Smith131926
Yalobusha124935
Walthall115438
Greene114929
Noxubee114526
Montgomery112936
Lawrence107917
Carroll106922
Perry105931
Amite102727
Webster98024
Claiborne90125
Tunica89621
Jefferson Davis89330
Benton86923
Humphreys85625
Kemper81220
Quitman7169
Franklin71017
Choctaw64013
Wilkinson60125
Jefferson57321
Sharkey45717
Issaquena1616
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 445909

Reported Deaths: 6896
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson651891049
Mobile32138590
Madison28596223
Tuscaloosa21703276
Montgomery20220336
Shelby19584138
Baldwin17496216
Lee13378109
Morgan12741145
Etowah12196189
Calhoun11626228
Marshall10513126
Houston9097168
Limestone842481
Cullman8363125
Elmore8283112
Lauderdale7986112
DeKalb7935112
St. Clair7915139
Talladega6552112
Walker6068184
Jackson605649
Colbert560194
Blount551794
Autauga544065
Coffee470569
Dale415186
Franklin378150
Russell362816
Chilton348079
Covington344681
Escambia342244
Tallapoosa3184109
Dallas314197
Chambers308575
Clarke307339
Pike267735
Lawrence256958
Marion255763
Winston235243
Bibb224751
Geneva214747
Marengo212031
Pickens201831
Barbour188240
Hale187444
Fayette181230
Butler175960
Cherokee167433
Henry161325
Monroe153521
Randolph148236
Washington144027
Clay131050
Crenshaw126245
Macon124337
Cleburne123627
Lamar121324
Lowndes117636
Wilcox109422
Bullock105829
Perry100518
Conecuh98222
Sumter90828
Greene78323
Coosa64619
Choctaw52224
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