- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 1, 2015

U.S. Rep. Matt Salmon faced backlash from several parents who say their children were terrified after he talked about Iranian suicide bombers during a visit to a Phoenix-area elementary school.

The Republican spoke Thursday to second- and third-graders at San Tan Charter School in Gilbert, giving a presentation on how bills become laws, a local CBS affiliate reported.

“It should have probably just been a good civics lesson for kids who initially were excited to meet their congressman,” parent Scott Campbell said.

Mr. Campbell said the lesson took a dark turn when it came time to talk about vetoes.

“The congressman chose to give an example of the current situation in Iran and made some inappropriate comments about ‘Do you know what a nuclear weapon is? Do you know that there are schools that train children your age to be suicide bombers?’ ” he told CBS.

Mr. Campbell said he and other parents were shocked by Mr. Salmon’s “terrible lack of judgment.” The parent said he had to console his young daughter.

“After school, my daughter was very concerned and said to me she actually didn’t even know what suicide was and was very afraid,” Mr. Campbell told CBS.

On Monday, Mr. Salmon’s office said staff met with some concerned parents and Mr. Salmon had a “pleasant conversation” with several by phone that evening, his spokesman told the The Arizona Republic.

“It was never Congressman Salmon’s intention to offend any parents,” said spokesman Tristan Daedalus. “The content o‎f those remarks wasn’t anything beyond what children could expect to see or hear on any timely TV or radio newscast.”

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