State Rep. Bryan Stevenson set off a firestorm in the House today when he said any attempt by the federal government to undo state laws restricting abortion would be "the greatest power grab" since the North declared war on the South to end slavery.
“What we are dealing with today is the greatest power grab by the federal government since the war of northern aggression,” Stevenson said, R-Webb City, referring what Southern states called the North's attempt to end slavery in the 1860s.
The remark caused a sudden gasp heard throughout the House's chamber.
War of Northern Aggression is a term Southerners use to maintain that the North unjustly and illegally invaded the South to put an end to the enslavement of African Americans.
Springfield News-Leader political reporter Chad Livengood notes that Stevenson apologized, but it was one of those apologies you hear from people who are not sorry for what they said, but for sorry that it has landed them in trouble:
Stevenson, who represents parts of Jasper County and is considering a bid for Congress if the 7th District seat becomes open in 2010, later apologized on the House floor, saying he was sorry "for any offense that my earlier comment made."
Missourinet has a link to Stevenson's comments.
This is not the first time "Big Gun" has displayed a big mouth as evidenced by one of my favorite videos, which accompanies this post.