Alabama Rep. Mo Brooks is not backing down from an ad describing his experience being shot at.
In a new TV ad, Brooks highlights that he was at the Republican practice for the Congressional Baseball Game last month.
The ad opens with text saying “June 14: a Bernie Sanders Supporter fires on Republican Congressmen” and has the sound of gunshots.
The ad continues saying that Brooks used his belt as a tourniquet to apply to a wound on a staffer’s leg.
It then segues to show reporters who Brooks describes as “the liberal media” asking about guns before showing footage of his response as patriotic music plays in the background.
“The Second Amendment, the right to bears arms, is to ensure we always have a republic,” the footage shows Brooks saying. “So, no, I don’t plan on changing any of the rights we enjoy as Americans.”
In an interview, Brooks said had he been allowed to possess a firearm, it would have prevented more damage at the baseball practice.
“If I had been allowed to carry a firearm me and had one, I might could have, under the circumstances faced taken down the assassin after he had shot one maybe two people at most,” Brooks said. “All of us were in that dugout defenseless.”
Brett Horton, Scalise’s chief of staff, criticized the ad on Twitter, saying “this makes my stomach turn.”
The day of the shooting, while waiting at the hospital, I avoided the news/audio/video as much as possible. This makes my stomach turn.
— Brett Horton (@bretthhorton) July 24, 2017
A spokesperson for Scalise criticized the ad, telling Alex Moe of NBC News “I guess some people have their own ideas about what’s appropriate.”
But Brooks said he was accurately representing what happened in response to Horton’s tweet.
“It churns my stomach too,” he said. “It brings back unpleasant memories but they’re truthful ones.”
Brooks also said it was Strange who made guns an issue in the primary race and he was doing his best to project his views.
“Every person I have talked with who has seen the ad likes it,” he said. “It gives them comfort that when I say I will defend Second Amendment right to bear arms that I mean it.”
Clay Mills, a spokesman for the Brooks campaign, said the ad will run on broadcast, digital and cable. The campaign would not disclose the amount of money spent on the ad.
Brooks has faced criticism from the Senate Leadership Fund, a group affiliated with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, for being insufficiently supportive of President Donald Trump.
The primary for the Senate race is on Aug. 15, with a potential runoff on Sept. 26. The general election is in December.