Another exception to social norms for Republicans: It's perfectly acceptable to beat your wife, be convicted, and still be eligible to run for office.
GOP Wife-Beater Running Against Susan Collins
January 24, 2014

Why are so many conservatives odious people? It's a rhetorical question, don't answer. But the latest one to catch my attention is a doozy.

Erick Bennett is Susan Collins' conservative primary challenger for her Senate seat. He's also a nasty wife-beater.


A little over a week after the incident, Angela took the couple's children and drove to her parents' house. She reported the alleged assault to the Bangor police in early February of that year. "I finally feel strong enough to press charges against him," Angela wrote in the police report. The couple went to court in early May. After a one day trial, a judge found Erick guilty of assaulting Angela and sentenced him to 60 days in prison. The judge then waived the sentence, and ordered a year's probation and the completion of a batterer's intervention program.

Erick told the court he never hurt Angela. According to court records, "Erick testified that…Angela wearing high heels, tripped over her own legs and that Erick attempted to catch her, but failed, and they fell to the floor." He told Mother Jones, "She came at me and started hitting me in the chest. I put my hands up and stopped her, and she fell…I tried to not land on her hard, and I didn't. I did lay there a second because she was freaking out." As for the charge that he threatened to kill her, Erick insists, "I don't know what you're talking about."

Oh sure, of course it's just his clumsy wife who attacked that poor man. How could anyone think otherwise? If ever there was a classic example of how domestic abusers think, this is it. They can't control themselves, think it's perfectly fine to beat up their chattel spouses, and then lie through their tiny little teeth when confronted.

Worse yet, Bennett is running on a platform of eroding existing laws against wife-beating:

Bennett claims that one reason he's running for office is to try to change domestic-violence laws that he contends enable fraud. "Anything can be considered domestic assault in Maine," he says. Bennett adds: "All I would have to do is go to the police station and write down something. Then, once I get on the stand, I just need to recite that…And that is enough to get you convicted of domestic assault…I never saw it coming."

That is a guy at least some Maine Republicans think is material for the Senate. Sociopathy seems to be a common characteristic shared by "severe conservatives."

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