Violence and intimidation against Republicans are quickly becoming the new normal in an increasingly tense political climate.
In one of the most recent incidents, police in Tennessee charged a woman with felony reckless endangerment on Thursday for allegedly trying to run Republican Congressman David Kustoff off the road after a town hall. The woman, Wendi Wright, was reportedly enraged over Kustoff’s support for the American Health Care Act and screamed at the congressman and his aide, striking his car windows and reaching inside the vehicle.
The same day that Tennessee police charged Wright for reckless endangerment, police in North Dakota escorted an enraged man from another town hall after he became physical with Republican Rep. Kevin Cramer over his support for the GOP Obamacare replacement. “Will the rich benefit from, if the health care is destroyed, do the rich get a tax break? Yes or no?” the man shouted, before shoving cash down the congressman’s collar. “There you go, take it.”
CNN’s Poppy Harlow downplayed the incident, saying the man was “showing his disgust” with Cramer.
The day before that, a Huffington Post article that showed “how to really turn up the heat on elected officials” went viral. The author, Michaelangelo Signorile, called on protesters to harass Republicans at dinner, when they’re out shopping and even at home. Societal norms for the basic levels of decency one should afford political opponents, Signorile argued, no longer apply to liberals.
“It’s time to move beyond polite protests within specified boundaries. It’s time to escalate the expression of our outrage and our anger in a massive way,” he wrote. (RELATED: In Their Own Words: Anti-Trump ‘Resistance’ Leaders Say They Want To Make America ‘Ungovernable’)
Starting today and from here on, no elected official ― certainly those in the GOP defending and supporting Trump on a variety of issues, for example ― should be able to sit down for a nice, quiet lunch or dinner in a Washington, DC eatery or even in their own homes. They should be hounded by protestors everywhere, especially in public ― in restaurants, in shopping centers, in their districts, and yes, on the public property outside their homes and apartments, in Washington and back in their home states.
Signorile’s article has already been shared more than 29,000 times.
Political violence has been increasingly common as left-wing organizations have whipped up mobs against Republicans and supporters of the president. (RELATED: Leaked Audio Reveals Anti-Trump Forces Manufacturing Hostile Town Hall)
A popular parade in Portland, Oregon last month was cancelled after threats of violence against one of the groups participating — a local Republican organization.
An email warning parade organizers promised 200 or more protesters would rush into the parade and drag the Republican marchers out, if that’s what it took to keep them from participating. “You have seen how much power we have downtown and that the police cannot stop us from shutting down roads so please consider your decision wisely,” the email warned. Portland has been a site for organized left-wing protests, which have often turned into violent riots. (RELATED: Leader Of Portland Anti-Trump Protests Charged With Sexually Abusing A Minor)
The threat was sent from an email address registered with RiseUp.Net, an organization that is open about “providing communication and computer resources to allies engaged in struggles against capitalism and other forms of oppression.”
The Oregon threat was credible in part because Berkeley, California has become a literal political battlefield on multiple occasions now, after far-left groups have resorted to violence to keep Pro-Trump speakers (or, in one case, free speech marchers who happened to be Trump supporters) from appearing in public.
Pro-Trump speaker Milo Yiannopoulos had his speech at the University of California-Berkeley cancelled after rioters set the campus ablaze in order to keep him from speaking. (RELATED: ‘INFERNO’ — Milo Speech Cancelled After Rioters Set Campus Ablaze [VIDEO])
Protests against Milo at UC Berkeley. Protesters chanting “This is what community looks like.” pic.twitter.com/a0YIZ3epIc
— Shane Bauer (@shane_bauer) February 2, 2017
Political commentator Ann Coulter, who staunchly supported Trump during his presidential campaign, had her speech at UC Berkeley cancelled after the protest groups vowed a repeat performance of the Milo riots. (RELATED: Documents Tie Berkeley Riot Organizers To Pro-Pedophilia Group NAMBLA)
A North Carolina GOP office was even firebombed a month before the election, and a building adjacent to it was spray painted with graffiti: “Nazi Republicans get out of town or else.”
Being a Republican in high school or college is increasingly treacherous — and not just at Berkeley.
Shortly before the election, a female high school student was attacked after declaring her support for Trump. A fellow female student took the girl’s glasses off and punched her in the face, saying, “Fuck you, you bitch.”
Olivia Corn, president of Cornell University’s College Republicans, said she was physically assaulted the night after Trump won the election. “Fuck you, racist bitch, you support a racist party,” her attacker reportedly said. Ironically, Corn said she was “not Donald Trump’s biggest fan,” and added that she “was saddened that I was not afforded the same respect that I offer others.”
A Maryland high school student wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat after the election was punched and kicked by students protesting Trump after he started arguing with them.
Similarly, police in Florida arrested a 17-year-old high school student after he punched a classmate for carrying a Trump sign at school.
“It definitely had a political motivation,” said Lt. Mike Bandish of the Palm Bay Police Department. “The boy was carrying a Trump sign and walked into the gym. The other boy punched him in the face.”