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Steve King
Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, hold a copy of the health care bill on the West Front of the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2009, during a Republican health care news conference. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

I follow Iowa 5th District Congressman Steve King on his Twitter account. A week ago, I read his tweet, pondered it, read it again and moved on. It seemed a raccoon that came on his Kiron property had been killed, but I wasn’t sure how exactly. Did an eagle swoop down on the thing?

King’s tweet: “Mid day, mid blizzard, 15 degrees, Crazy Raccoon chewing and clawing his way into my house. Desert Eagle 1, Crazy Raccoon zero.”

It turns out the four-term Republican congressman indeed shot the animal, as he explained today in a piece by Roll Call titled “King’s parting shot.” King said his wife Marilyn first noticed the animal trying to get into the house days before, and King was concerned the animal was rabid.

He told Roll Call that he was on a Feb. 9 conference call when the raccoon returned.

King grabbed a gun he has dubbed Desert Eagle — “It’s the one I had handy” — and went after the raccoon, which fled. King caught up, fired and killed the creature.

“We can’t have an animal that might be sick, might be rabid, out there,” King said. “That’s just what has to happen when you live out here in the country.”

However, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) criticized King, with spokesman Jaime Zalac saying King should not have dispatched “a small animal seeking warmth in another blizzard.”

Find the rest of Bret Hayworth's Politically Speaking blog entry at siouxcityjournal.com/blogs.

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