Controversial campaign mailer has some Chula Vista voters questioning its appropriateness

Mailer shows guns taking aim
Posted at 5:17 PM, Nov 02, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-02 20:51:32-04

CHULA VISTA, Calif. - A handful of Chula Vista voters are questioning the appropriateness of a campaign flyer that arrived in the mail this week.

"Why would you put this on a paper and send it to homes?" asked Chula Vista voter Griselda Delgado. "I was shocked initially."

One side of the flyer features a man taking aim with a handgun at a gun range. The other side looks through the scope of a gun at a target. Both sides of the flyer endorse Jason Paguio and Mike Diaz for Chula Vista City Council.

"When you see the barrel of an M-16 and you're shooting and targeting, that concept, that feeling, if you've shot and you've targeted, you've practiced, the intent is to kill," said Delgado, who is a military veteran.

Delgado is now a mom, teacher, and sits on the Southwestern College Governing Board.

"What is the message to our children? That's what I want to know," she added.

"It's to show law-abiding citizens exercising their constitutional rights at a range," said San Diego County Gun Owners Executive Director Michael Schwartz.

The organization, which is a year old, sent the mailer. The mailer said Paguio and Diaz would protect gun owner rights.

Paguio and Diaz's respective opponents in Tuesday's election, Steve Padilla and Rudy Ramirez, also denounced the mailer Wednesday.

Padilla and Ramirez both said they are gun owners but support restrictive measures on guns.

Schwartz said, "If pictures of people exercising their constitutional rights are offensive to people, then they're even more extreme and unfit for public office than we already knew they were."

"It should not be an issue. It has never been an issue," argued Delgado.

Schwartz said he's looking down the road. Local politicians often become state or federal politicians where they could have a larger impact on gun laws.

"We want people that are going to respect our civil rights right off the bat," he said.