In an effort to deflect blame away from Donald Trump's incitement of the riot at the US Capitol that left five people dead, Sen. Rand Paul turned to Newsmax to make the ultimate "whataboutism" "both-siderist" lie.
Sen. Paul claimed that Democratic criticisms of Republican's despicable health care plan in 2017 was just as inciteful as Trump's acts of sedition after the Nov. 3rd election.
James T. Hodgkinson, an insane man who shot Rep. Scalise in 2017, has become Paul's foil. Both sides!
"Was a Bernie Sanders supporter, and he'd been incited by health care."
That's a lie. The man was unhinged and violent for years and appeared homeless at the time . As CNN reported, "Here’s a Republican that should Lose His Job, but they Gave Him a Raise,” Hodgkinson said of Scalise, pointing to a cartoon about the congressman.The cartoon – which featured Scalise addressing a racist crowd of members of the Klu Klux Klan – referenced how Scalise had been caught speaking to a white supremacist group more than a decade earlier when he was a state legislator in Louisiana."
But Paul needed a scapegoat.
"And the thing is, what were the Democrats saying at that time? They were saying, 'oh, the Republican plan for health care is you get sick, and then you die.' Well that to me sounds like if you've got a sick young one or a kid or somebody who has leukemia and might die, that Republicans want your child to die. it sounds like the kind of language that would incite violence, and it set this man off," Sen. Paul said.
As awful as Hodgkinson's actions were, Bernie Sanders didn't hold rally after rally after a very heated general election. Sanders never spread lies and conspiracy theories or told his supporters to get tough and get ready to march on the Capitol and not let Republicans steal their health care away from them for months.
Sen. Paul admitted that Republicans did not blame Bernie Sanders for the man's actions (though Fox News had a meal of it) because what was happening was normal political theater during a policy debate and a lone crazy man acted violently.
I would add that protestors flooded the halls of Congress during the healthcare debate, Rand. And if they refused to cooperate with Capitol police, they were arrested.
What Trump did for over two months was an act of sedition to overthrow a free and fair election.
Sen. Paul's false equivalency has nothing to do with what a sitting president did that incited a riot and the sacking of the U.S. Capitol after losing a presidential election.
Trump's refusal to concede and then vociferously claim the Democrats, Dominion voting machines, Republicans, and the court systems plotted and stole the 2020 presidential election away from him in a massive conspiracy.
Even after his own life and the lives of his colleagues in both the Senate and the House were threatened by Trump, his surrogates, and their seditious MAGA mob actions on January 6, Paul is still playing the fool.
Frances Langum contributed to this post.