Dr. Milton Wolf, a radiologist who is challenging incumbent Republican Sen. Pat Roberts, posted the images on Facebook and other websites, along with gallows-humor comments mocking dead and injured people, the Topeka (Kan.) Capital-Journal reported.
One image showed a gunshot victim, with Wolf evidently joking the victim wouldn't mind the placement of his head for an X-ray since he was dead, the newspaper reported. In another, Wolf commented that the image on an X-ray of a man decapitated by gunfire reminded him of a character in the movie "Terminator."
Wolf initially declined an interview with the Capital-Journal, saying he would not "play these kinds of gotcha games." When he did grant an interview, he but said the images were for educational purposes and to illustrate there is evil in the world, the newspaper said.
The Tea Party favorite, whose campaign website bills him as "the next Ted Cruz," issued the apology Sunday, saying medical professionals often become desensitized by their experience with sickness and tragedy.
"Several years ago, I made some comments about these images that were insensitive to the seriousness of what the images revealed," he said. "Soon thereafter, I removed those images. However, my mistakes are my own and I take full responsibility for them."
He blamed a "political adversary," Roberts, for attacking "me as a doctor rather than giving Kansans a reason to vote for him."