Missouri rep posts hope that Confederate monument vandal is hang - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Missouri rep posts hope that Confederate monument vandal is hanged

Rep. Warren Love (Source: house.mo.gov) Rep. Warren Love (Source: house.mo.gov)

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri lawmaker said in a Wednesday Facebook post that he hoped whoever placed paint on a Confederate monument in Springfield is found and hanged, prompting Democratic leaders to ask him to step down over what they're describing as a call for a lynching.

Osceola Republican Rep. Warren Love said in a Facebook post Wednesday that he hopes whoever vandalized the monument is "hung from a tall tree with a long rope."

He later told The Associated Press that he didn't really mean that and says he thinks it's terrible when someone vandalizes an object of remembrance. Love apologized in a later post he provided to AP.

The vandalism was discovered at the Springfield National Cemetery on Wednesday, at a time when heightened security surrounded President Donald Trump's visit to Springfield.

Missouri Democratic Party Chairman Stephen Webber is calling on Love to resign.

Lieutenant Governor Mike Parson said, "Representative Warren Love’s recent social media post is unacceptable and inexcusable. Regardless of the context or situation, no elected official should call for violence against anyone. I agree with Governor Greitens that Representative Love must face the consequences for his actions."

Parson went on to say that the members of the Missouri House of Representatives to decide if any disciplinary action should be taken.

Love's post is no longer up, although the lawmaker told AP he did not take it down.

The Democratic National Committee released this statement:

“Both Warren Love and Jason Spencer made unconscionable threats alluding to a type of political violence with painful roots in American history. There is never an excuse for these types of intimidations in our political discourse. With our nation still healing from the tragedies of Charlottesville – where white supremacists marched with torches and shouted racist chants – the people of Missouri and Georgia deserve better. Republican lawmakers Love and Spencer plunged to new lows by peddling threats of violence against members of their communities. In stark contrast, the Democratic Party will always stand up to disgraceful displays of bigotry such as this.” 

Crews in the southeast Missouri city of Springfield are cleaning up after paint was placed on a Confederate monument.

The vandalism was discovered Wednesday, at a time when heightened security surrounded President Donald Trump's visit to Springfield.

The monument is at the Springfield National Cemetery. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs confirms that someone vandalized the statue. The Greene County Sheriff's Department is investigating.

Confederate monuments have been coming down around the country since the 2015 fatal shooting of nine black parishioners at a church in Charleston, South Carolina, by a 23-year-old white racist. But the pace has picked up since violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, earlier this month.

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Copyright 2017 KFVS. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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