Come election time, Chris Christie will not get the spider lover vote.
The New Jersey governor demonstrated his bug killing skills to a group of fourth-graders when the unwelcome guest crawled across the desk in his office. Video captured the crowd of kids pointing out the arachnid, and the governor making an executive decision: He kills it with his hand, then wipes the remains on his pants.
“That's also one of the fun parts of being governor. Any bugs on your desk, you're allowed to kill them and not get in trouble," the governor is heard saying on video posted by his office.
Not everyone seems to agree. Ingrid Newkirk, president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said the governor missed a teachable moment.
"He probably did it without thinking,” Newkirk said in a statement. “Some people put the spider outside, but spiders are often scary to people, and that can prevent them from pondering their worth."
PETA’s insect activism is bipartisan, it should be noted. The organization sent President Barack Obama a “humane fly catcher” after he caught and killed a fly during an interview with CNBC back in 2009.
“We support compassion for the even the smallest animals," Bruce Friedrich, vice president for policy at PETA, said at the time. “We support giving insects the benefit of the doubt."