Allahpundit mentioned this earlier but it’s something I’ve been thinking about writing about for at least a week so I’m going to focus on it here as well. Fox News reports Sen. Rand Paul made the statement today on a radio show today:
“I fear that there’s going to be an assassination,” Paul told a Kentucky radio show. “I really worry that somebody is going to be killed, and that those who are ratcheting up the conversation … they have to realize they bear some responsibility if this elevates to violence.”…
“When people like Cory Booker say get up in their face … What he doesn’t realize is that for every 1,000 persons who want to get up in your face, one of them is going to be unstable enough to commit violence,” Paul said…
“When I was at the ballfield and Steve Scalise was nearly killed, the guy shooting up the ballfield, and shooting I think five or six people, he was yelling, ‘This is for health care,'” Paul told host Leland Conway on Tuesday. “When I was attacked in my yard and had six of my ribs broken, and pneumonia, lung contusion, all that — these are people that are unstable, we don’t want to encourage them.”
Sen. Paul is in a unique position to talk about this topic because he’s seen it up close. It’s not just the baseball practice either. Paul was attacked in his own yard by a neighbor who had posted things about Republicans on social media. The neighbor’s lawyer maintained the attack had nothing to do with politics, just lawn maintenance but I’m not sure how anyone can know what was in the man’s mind at the time of the attack.
Last week a 27-year-old Democratic congressional staffer was caught after posting the personal information of several GOP senators online. This happened in the midst of the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings and appeared to be prompted by them. Sen. Paul’s wife, Kelley Paul, revealed over the weekend that someone had posted her home address online leading to additional police patrols and her decision to keep a loaded gun near her bed at night:
It’s nine o’clock at night, and as I watch out the window, a sheriff’s car slowly drives past my home. I am grateful that they have offered to do extra patrols, as someone just posted our home address, and Rand’s cell number, on the internet — all part of a broader effort to intimidate and threaten Republican members of Congress and their families. I now keep a loaded gun by my bed. Our security systems have had to be expanded. I have never felt this way in my life.
Democrats on the far left keep pushing to make this kind of confrontation the new normal. We saw it with Cory Booker telling people to get in the face of congresspeople (see below). We saw it defended by Sen. Hirono. We saw it with Rep. Maxine Waters suggesting that people should harass Trump officials wherever they see them. Just a few months ago this was considered fringe behavior and now it seems to be happening every week, most recently with protesters making death threats against Judge Kavanaugh and showing up at Sen. Collins home. And let’s not forget the left-wing mob which hounded Sen. Cruz and his wife out of a restaurant. Meanwhile, there don’t seem to be too many elected Democrats demanding this behavior stop.
Do I think it’s likely that someone will actually be killed over this sort of thing? I think it’s still a longshot but I am convinced the chance of it happening goes up every time Democrats try to remedy their electoral failures by asking their base to get in people’s faces. It only takes one borderline personality like James Hodgkinson to decide the solution is to take the next step beyond confrontation to deadly violence. There are assuredly nuts like that on both sides but right now it’s the left that keeps ratcheting up the level of confrontation. Whatever happened to the new tone of politics we were promised after the Tucson shooting? Many on the left seem to have forgotten all about that.
Kelley Paul talked about this dynamic on Fox News last week. “The new message is get up in their face, get in people’s face and I don’t think people realize just how threatening that feels.”