A Black Republican candidate for Congress in Arizona has triggered a social-media sensation with an ad in which he fights off the Ku Klux Klan with an AR-15.
Former NFL running back Jerone Davison released a 30-second ad Wednesday entitled “Make Rifles Great Again” that shows him preparing to confront a dozen Klansmen in white hoods as they attack his home.
“Democrats like to say that no one needs an AR-15 for self-defense,” says Mr. Davison in the ad. “That no one could possibly need all 30 rounds. But when this rifle is the only thing standing between your family and a dozen angry Democrats in Klan hoods, you just might need that semi-automatic. And all 30 rounds.”
The ad immediately took off, garnering more than 2.6 million views on Twitter and boosting the profile of Mr. Davison, who’s running for the GOP nomination to challenge Democratic Rep. Greg Stanton in Arizona’s newly drawn Fourth Congressional District.
The Mississippi-born Davison, 51, attended Arizona State University as a football recruit. He played a season for the Oakland Raiders, now the Las Vegas Raiders, then moved on to become a pastor, author and public speaker, according to his campaign bio.
Make Rifles Great Again 💪🏿
— Jerone Davison for Congress #AZCD4 (@Jerone4Congress) July 6, 2022
The ad starts with Mr. Davison sipping from a red, white and blue coffee cup and praying before donning sunglasses and picking up an AR-15.
“I was born in 1970 in Mississippi,” Mr. Davison tweeted. “When the KKK came to town, I always felt safe, because my father had rifles to protect us. This video is a cinematic depiction of a situation I faced growing up.”
He added: “Racist white liberals 🤡 love to tell me that my LIVED EXPERIENCE didn’t happen!”
The newly drawn district, which includes Tempe, Mesa and Chandler, is now represented by Republican Rep. Paul Gosar, who’s running for reelection in the Ninth Congressional District in the Aug. 2 primary.
Comments on the Davison ad on Twitter ranged from “Is this the best political ad ever?” to “Here’s the Klan and they vote for Republicans, you absolute imbecile.”
The Ku Klux Klan was founded by individual Democrats but not the party, according to a July 1 fact-check by USA Today.
Mr. Davison’s campaign manager is Austin Steinbart, an ASU graduate who was described as a “QAnon influencer,” according to the Phoenix New Times.