Steelman defends activist who made ‘kill the Claire bear’ remark about McCaskill

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Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Sarah Steelman is defending a Tea Party activist under fire for comments that have led law enforcement to increase security for Democrat Claire McCaskill.

At a Tea Party Express rally in Springfield last week, Scott Boston, a St. Louis area conservative activist, delivered the remarks that authorities have deemed threatening before Steelman took the stage.

“We have to kill the Claire Bear ladies and gentlemen,” Boston said. “She walks around like she’s some sort of Rainbow Brite Care Bear or something but really she’s an evil monster.”

In a statement, Steelman defended Boston’s comments and blamed “the liberal media” for allegedly attacking Boston’s remarks.

“This is a typical double standard and why we conservatives are at war with the liberal establishment,” she said. “I may disagree with the words Mr. Boston chose in his statement, but I understand his frustration and I emphatically support his right to express his views.”

The comments prompted police in Kirkwood, Mo., to step up patrols around McCaskill’s home, and for the United State Capitol Police to recommend increased security for McCaskill at public events, according to the St. Louis Post Dispatch.

Boston told the newspaper that he was using the phrase metaphorically and that “in no way” does he wish harm upon McCaskill.

St. Louis businessman John Brunner, one of Steelman’s Republican rivals, criticized Boston’s statement.

“This type of rhetoric is unconscionable and I reject this kind of politics,” Brunner said. “Comments like these have no place in this U.S. Senate campaign, or any other campaign in this country, because they don’t represent American values.”