Louisiana Republican Rep. Steve Scalise told The Daily Caller News Foundation Thursday that The New York Times should take down and apologize for a short fictional story about assassinating President Donald Trump published Tuesday.
“The media needs to take accountability for the role they are playing in promoting dangerous rhetoric and division in this country, particularly against President Trump and his supporters,” Scalise said in a statement to TheDCNF. “The decision by The New York Times to run this piece is irresponsible and offensive, and they should remove it and apologize.”
TheNYT published a short story about assassinating Trump Tuesday, just one day before “potential explosive devices” were discovered addressed to high-profile Democrats, including former President Barack Obama.
English thriller novelist Zoë Sharp wrote the short story, titled “How It Ends,” about a Russian assassin on a suicide mission who receives help from a Secret Service agent to kill Trump. A character who is working with the Russians in the story implies that Trump “was handpicked at the highest possible level” and must be silenced. (RELATED: New York Times Publishes Trump Assassination Fantasy)
TheNYT had novelists “conjure possible outcomes” to special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
Scalise has spoken out about dangerous tensions in the nation since he was seriously injured by a would-be assassin in 2017.
“These attempted attacks that have been made are beyond criminal, they are acts of pure terror. Violence and terror have no place in our politics or anywhere else in our society,” Scalise wrote on Twitter Wednesday after multiple high-profile political figures had pipe bomb scares.
“I have experienced first-hand the effects of political violence, and am committed to using my voice to speak out against it wherever I can,” he added. (RELATED: Report: Pipe Bombs Sent To High-Profile Democrats And CNN Contained Powder, Glass Shards)
When TheDCNF inquired about Scalise’s statement to The NYT, its spokesperson issued the following response: “This is a bad faith inquiry, part of an attempt to manufacture a story. It’s very clear what this is: a work of fiction, commissioned by editors of the Book Review as part of a package of five stories penned by a range of spy and crime novelists — in the Halloween edition.”
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