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FIRST ON FOX: For Republican congressmen targeted in 2017 mass shooting at congressional baseball practice, revelation that a man was arrested and charged with attempting to assassinate Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh raised fears that the charged political climate could lead to more assassination attempts.
James T. Hodgkinson, a former far-left volunteer for Senator Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign, opened fire on a group of Republican lawmakers in June 2017 as they practiced for the annual Congressional baseball game. Steve Scalise House Minority WhipR-La., was shot and seriously injured in the attack, requiring surgery to save his life.
Fresh off a flight from California, police arrested 26-year-old Californian Nicholas Roske early Wednesday after he took a taxi to Kavanaugh’s home in Maryland with a gun to kill the judge, authorities said.
For Republicans who survived the baseball shootout, the alleged attempt to kill Kavanaugh and the surrounding political climate bring back memories — and fears — of the 2017 attack.
ACTIVISTS PLEDGE TO CONTINUE TO PROTEST AT HOUSES OF JUSTICE DESPITE ALLEGED ATTEMPT TO KILL KAVANAUGH AT HOME
“For weeks, Democratic leaders from the White House from President Biden to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer have encouraged dangerous protests against Supreme Court justices, including in their homes, to threaten and unlawfully intimidate for the purpose of altering the outcome of a court order,” Scalise told Fox News Digital.
“How many more times do we have to see political violence driven by threatening rhetoric before Democrats stop encouraging and condoning this kind of dangerous behavior?” continued the Republican whip.
“Rather than investigating parents at school board meetings as ‘domestic terrorists’, President Biden’s Justice Department should look into the real dangerous violence coming from the radical left that continues to bring life people in danger for their political opinions,” he added.
MEDIA, DEMOCRATIC RHETORIC TOWARDS KAVANAUGH, SUPREME COURT UNDER CONTROL AFTER ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, a Republican who was also present during the 2017 shootings, said protesters who gather outside the homes of Supreme Court Justices “should be arrested.”
“As a victim of politically motivated violence, I have continually spoken out against threats made against our Supreme Court justices and elected officials — something the Biden administration cannot even condemn, let alone acknowledge,” Paul said. . “Those who threaten these judges and disrupt neighborhoods in the middle of the night must be stopped.”
Texas Rep. Roger Williams, who was also on the baseball field that day, told Fox News Digital that every “American should be outraged by this deranged individual who is attempting to assassinate a sitting judge at the Supreme Court”.
“His arrest is reminiscent of that horrific day in 2017 when the Republican baseball team was gunned down by an angry Bernie Sanders supporter,” Williams said. “From someone who has experienced this kind of political violence firsthand, these incidents demonstrated what can happen if we continue to treat our political opponents as enemies.”
Rogers said he was “deeply concerned that these types of motivated attacks will continue to occur, with Senate Majority Leader Schumer telling supporters that Justice Kavanaugh will ‘pay the price’ if he does. simply his work, or with Maxine Waters encouraging people to “get more confrontational” with people they disagree with politically”.
“Instead of acting quickly, Nancy Pelosi just adjourned the House for the weekend without providing additional security for the sitting Supreme Court justices,” he continued. “I will continue to pray for the country and we must do all we can to ensure that political differences do not lead to violence against our government officials.”
Rep. Brad Wenstrup, R-Ohio, told Fox News Digital on Thursday that there is still a “component” of American society that believes trying to kill political opposition and other violent political actions “is the right thing to do”.
“But I am concerned about what is happening with the nature of the violent acts and especially the murderous acts that we are seeing,” Wenstrup said, adding that “there is something changing in our society and not for the better. “.
“And if we’re not honest with ourselves and start looking at what’s different and why this stuff is happening, then I don’t think we’re going to fix anything,” continued the Ohio Republican. . “We are not going to solve anything with these laws.”
Wenstrup said he believes several factors affect the root of the problem and hopes “US law enforcement is leading the way and trying to neutralize any potential threat before it happens.”
The Ohio Republican also said lawmakers who were on the ground that fateful day in June five years ago are not holding Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., accountable for his supporter’s actions, saying the shooter as well as the people who stormed the Capitol on January 6 are “responsible for their own actions.”
Wenstrup also spoke in the House to say it’s only “by the grace of God that at least 20 of my fellow Republicans and our staff weren’t killed by a crazed gun-wielding terrorist.” on that baseball field in Alexandria” and that the situation “is not a theoretical exercise for many of us on this side of the aisle.”
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“When I think back to that day, it wasn’t about the gun. It was about the person — the evil — on the other side of the gun,” Wenstrup said. “If it hadn’t been for good gunmen and women, Agents David Bailey and Crystal Griner, this terrorist would have easily murdered 20 to 30 members of Congress and staff, myself included.”
“Until America is willing to take a long look at us and heal what really ails us, I fear we are simply doomed to repeat more of the past,” he added.
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