Nope, no connection at all between rhetoric and action. None at all!
Those harmless, high-spirited scamps! Who would have a problem with a Patriot calling for the assassination of a U.S. Senator? After all, it's not as if anyone ever gunned down an elected official after being egged on by extremists! Hah hah, my sides are splitting!
In a Tea Party-sponsored conference call held on Wednesday night, a participant called for the assassination of Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) over her support for immigration reform.
Prominent conservative policymakers Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)’s communications director Stephen Miller and Heritage Foundation research fellow Robert Rector also joined the call, hosted by the conservative Eagle Forum group.
The most jarring and unexpected moment of the night was when the moderator opened up the phone lines to callers:
BOB FROM MAINE: I’m from Maine and our Tea Party will be meeting up next week. What is the best way that we can get our senator to listen to us?
ANOTHER CALLER: Shoot her. [laughter]
MODERATOR: Yes, we will shoot her with…(inaudible) and phone calls.
After the anonymous statement was made, no one on the call voiced their opposition. Instead, the threat was met with laughter and “oohs.” (At the time of the incident, Sessions’ communications director had apparently left the call.) Calling for the assassination of a senator is a federal crime punishable by five years of jail and may require a Secret Service investigation.
Collins was the sole Republican to co-sponsor Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT)’s withdrawn amendment that would allow bi-national, same sex couples to petition for immigrant visas for their significant others.