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Missouri senator says he would torch 'woke pornographic books' after false claims of book burning at GOP event

PoliticsMissouri senator says he would torch 'woke pornographic books' after false claims of book burning at GOP event

Claims that a Republican state senator running for governor in Missouri participated in a book burning at a recent GOP event have been proven false, but he said he would do it to “woke pornographic books” if they end up in the state’s schools.

In a now viral video, Sen. Bill Eigel can be seen shooting flames at cardboard boxes with state Sen. Nick Schroer, another Missouri Republican, during the St. Charles County Freedom Fest event outside St. Louis on Sept. 15. 

The video drew criticism after a user on X, formerly Twitter, claimed the two senators were “at a literal book burning” – a post that has since been fact-checked by Snopes stating that is not the case.

Eigel responded to the post himself by saying the blazing cardboard boxes represented what he plans to do to “leftist policies” and “RINO corruption” in Jefferson City, the state’s capital.


Missouri Senator Bill Eigel

Missouri Sen. Bill Eigel, who is running for governor, was not burning books at a recent St. Charles County Freedom Fest event, but said he would do so if “woke pornographic books” made it into the state’s schools. (Missouri State Senate)

“In the video, I am taking a flame thrower(sic) to cardboard boxes representing what I am going to do to the leftist policies and RINO corruption of the Jeff City swamp,” Eigel wrote on X. “But let’s be clear, you bring those woke pornographic books to Missouri schools to try to brainwash our kids, and I’ll burn those too – on the front lawn of the governor’s mansion.”

Freedom Fest organizer Debbie McFarland said the false claims about books being burned at the event “fit a narrative that they wanted to put out there” that “just didn’t happen to be the truth,” according to The Associated Press.

Missouri state senators blowing flames on empty boxes

Republican Missouri state Sens. Nick Schroer and Bill Eigel, who is running for governor, torch empty boxes at the St. Charles County Freedom Fest, a move that was criticized after some falsely claimed the two lawmakers were burning books. (Debbie McFarland via AP)

After the claims were proven false – and a note was added to the video stating such – some social media users denouncing the actions of Eigel and Schroer changed their language to say the incident was symbolic of a book burning.

“The community note is helpful here,” wrote Jonathan Riley, the X user who initially stated the video showed “a literal book burning.” “I admit I mistook this metaphorical book burning for a literal book burning. But the candidate for Governor in this video promised to burn books on the lawn of the Governor’s mansion if elected, so don’t act like I’m the one being inflammatory.”

On Tuesday, one day after Eigel said he would burn “woke pornographic books” if they make it into schools, he wrote on X:

“I take back nothing, apologize for nothing, and will fight to protect kids every. single. time. Truth never mattered to the Left—these are the folks that think men can get pregnant. Let’s Go Missouri!”

Missouri Sen. Eigel and Sen. Schroer with flamethrowers

The two Republican lawmakers shot flames at a pile of empty boxes during the St. Charles County Freedom Fest event on Sept. 15. (Screenshot/@BillEigel video on X)


Eigel continued the conversation on Wednesday by claiming on X that parents in St. Charles were outraged over a book found in a public library by the name of “Bang Like a Porn Star.” 

In a post accompanied by a picture of a bonfire, Eigel wrote that the book should be “burned, bulldozed, or launched into outer space before being allowed into the hands of kids.”


According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the book in question was found in the adult section of the library and “features interviews with several gay adult film stars and includes photographs detailing various sex acts.” It was one of two books community members described as too sexually explicit to be in public libraries at the St. Charles County-City Library Board meeting on Tuesday. 

The other book was “It’s Perfectly Normal: Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex, Gender and Sexual Health,” which was on display at one of the library’s 12 branches, according to the outlet.


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