Friday, March 26, 2010

Stay classy, Eric and the rest of the GOP

As Sean referenced in his post yesterday, the dead-enders of the teabagging spectrum of American politics are not taking the prospect of cheaper, more accessible health care well. In no small part egged on by the litany of right wing commentators and politicians calling majority enacting of broadly popular legislation tyranny, the end of civilization, the end of America, Armageddon, and calling for revolution or at least an armed insurrection, there has been an uptick in violence towards Democratic lawmakers who voted for the bill. Everything from bricks through windows, to phoned in death threats, to faxing nooses to lawmakers, to cutting the gas lines of the brother of Congressman Perriello, to mailing white powder to Anthony Weiner, it's really a cavalcade of dangerous low level right wing terrorism by petulant children. Catalog the ongoing stupidity at TPM.

And so the response from Democrats has been to condemn the attacks and ask that Republicans maybe tone down the insanity juuust a few notches, maybe stop the calls for a new American revolution, and downgrade the danger to society from complete apocalypse to minor Armageddon. So in turn John Boenher went out and released a statement affirming that bad things were bad and good things were good, but wanted you to understand that he knew bad things were bad. Thus the response from Democrats was "Uhhh... Ok" and they knew in their hearts that this was as much of an apology as they were going to get.

But apparently some memo has been going around the halls of Congress and the GOP has decided that they aren't coming across as big enough assholes during this run of violence, so Eric Cantor immediately followed up Boehner's vague speech with one placing the blame on where it truly lied: with Democrats.
"I've never blamed anyone in this body for that. Period. Any suggestion that a leader in this body that would incite threats or acts against other members is akin to saying that I would endanger myself, my wife or my children."

Cantor said a bullet was shot through the window of his Richmond, Va., campaign office this week, and that he's gotten threatening emails.
"It is reckless to use these incidents as media vehicles for political gain," he said. He called out DCCC Chair Chris Van Hollen and DNC Chair Tim Kaine by name as those who are "dangerously fanning the flames by suggesting that these incidents be used as a political weapon."

"To use such threats against members of congress is not a partisan issue," he said. "By ratcheting up the rhetoric some will only inflame these situations to dangerous levels."
There's video, so you can see that he actually said that with a straight face. Yes, it is not the people who are calling for revolution and heralding the end of all things that are to blame for violence, it's people who point out that the violence is politically motivated after the fact that are clearly to blame. And he's been subject to violence too! Not that he would ever stoop to politicizing it by politicizing it in a political speech about politicizing violence. Sure, police called bullshit on his claims and said that his "bullet attack" was just random and the result of a bullet, fired into the air, randomly coming down and striking his office. Don't you see how that's worse? Gravity is attacking Eric Cantor!

Soon, other Republicans were taking Cantor's ideas to heart and were out in full force blaming Democrats for this. Reps Price and Bachmann hit the airwaves to decry Democratic politicization of right wing fueled attacks. In the case of Tom Perriello, where a Tea Party activist deliberately posted up the address of Perriello's brother and told fellow teabaggers to "drop by", thinking it was Rep Perriello's house, and then, magically, a gas line got cut, the NRCC not only downplayed the violence but excused it and claimed that the real victims were those in Periello's district who would be harmed by cheaper health care. It should be noted that Periello's brother has a wife and 4 small children.

Way to keep it classy, GOP. I thought there wasn't a lower place you could go, but the inciting of violence and then tacitly endorsing it and excusing it when it happens, only stopping to blame victims, was something I didn't see coming. It was my mistake for thinking some shred of human decency existed when things like gas lines being cut, children being endangers, and anthrax threats were being made and you'd have some sort of discernibly human reaction. Guess not. Whatever, keep calling for revolution, uprisings, and coded statements about "showing lawmakers the will of the people... wink wink", I'm sure it has no connection to any of these attacks. Keep it classy. Maybe there will be an actual death soon for you to blame on the victim.

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