The Secret Service is investigating comments made on social media by a Missouri state senator who reportedly said she hoped President Donald Trump would be assassinated, CNN reported.
Democratic State Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal's comment on personal Facebook page -- “I hope Trump is assassinated -- was deleted, but it has triggered a call for her resignation by fellow legislators.
"The St. Louis Field Office of the Secret Service is looking into the comments," Secret Service spokeswoman Cathy Milhoan said in a statement to CNN. "The Secret Service investigates all threats against the President, Vice President, and other protectees, whether they be direct, implied or comments in passing.
Chappelle-Nadal has apologized for the post, telling KMOV that the comment arose from her frustration from the current political climate in the United States, particularly in the wake of the unrest last weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia. On Saturday, a car drove through a crowd of counter-protesters, killing one woman and injuring several other people. Trump’s initial response was criticized after he said there was blame “on many sides” for the violence.
Chappelle-Nadal backed off her initial Facebook post Thursday.
“No, I don't want to see anyone assassinated, but he should not be president, he should be impeached,” she told KMOV. “Someone wrote a statement on my Facebook and I responded with something that shouldn't have been put up there."
Missouri lawmakers condemned the remark.
Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill, a fellow Democrat, said in a statement: "I condemn it. It's outrageous. And she should resign."
Stephen Webber, chairman of the Missouri Democratic Party, called Chappelle-Nadal’s comments “indefensible.”
“All sides need to agree that there is no room for suggestions of political violence in America -- and the Missouri Democratic Party will absolutely not tolerate calls for the assassination of the President,” Webber said. “I believe she should resign."
Missouri Republican Gov. Eric Greitens also demanded she resign in a statement, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
"We can have differences in our country, but no one should encourage political violence. The senator should resign,” Greitens said.
U.S. Rep. William Lacy Clay told the Post-Dispatch that “calling for the assassination of the President is a federal crime. … (She is) an embarrassment to our state. She should resign immediately.”
Chappelle-Nadal said she would not step down.
“No. Absolutely not. I told people if there are legislators cheating on their wives and smoking marijuana in their offices and they’re not being asked to resign, I am not going to resign for a mistake I made and owned up to,” she told Fox2Now of St, Louis.
“I am not resigning,” she tweeted. “When POC are respected by this WH & they are willing to do real work, I'll sit down with them. People are traumatized!”
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.