As I said in the other thread, Sanders was more vocal than most Democrats in criticizing the threats aimed at Ann Coulter by far-left fascists at Berkeley. “People have a right to give their two-cents-worth,” he said in April, “without fear of violence and intimidation.” No righty will watch this, though, without wondering how today would have played if the ideology of the shooter and his victims were different. Conservatives were flayed rhetorically for their “climate of hate” after Gabby Giffords was shot by a nut whose political identity was less coherent than James Hodgkinson’s. Among those who did the flaying: Bernie Sanders.
Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-VT, today sent out a fundraising email to supporters in which he includes his analysis of the Arizona shootings that ties the tragedy to “right-wing reactionaries.”…
“In light of all of this violence – both actual and threatened – is Arizona a state in which people who are not Republicans are able to participate freely and fully in the democratic process?” asks Sanders. “Have right-wing reactionaries, through threats and acts of violence, intimidated people with different points of view from expressing their political positions?”
“My colleague, Senator John McCain, issued a very strong statement after the shooting in which he condemned the perpetrator of the attack. I commend him for that. But I believe Senator McCain and other Arizona Republicans need to do more,” Sanders said. “As the elder statesman of Arizona politics McCain needs to stand up and denounce the increasingly violent rhetoric coming from the right-wing and exert his influence to create a civil political environment in his state.”
I don’t blame Bernie for what Hodgkinson did, but if you’re a fan of “climate of hate” thinking, maybe pause to consider what “Republicans are trying to kill you with their health-care bill!” invective might do to a nut.
Some people were better behaved today…
— Rep. Ruben J. Kihuen (@RepKihuen) June 14, 2017
…and some were not:
Jesus, this is scary. pic.twitter.com/4rzTq3zPkd
— Adrian Carrasquillo (@Carrasquillo) June 14, 2017
Two clips for you here, one of Sanders and the other of a rare moment of comity in the House during Paul Ryan’s remarks, worth watching if only for the effusive, entirely justified praise for the Capitol Police officers who stopped a massacre. Rand Paul noted this morning that the only reason CP were on the scene is because Steve Scalise is a member of the House leadership. If Scalise had skipped practice, it would have been a turkey shoot for Hodgkinson.