Dem 51
image description
Ties 1
GOP 48
image description

Let the Gaslighting Begin

It's been about 72 hours since Paul Pelosi, the husband of Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), was attacked by an intruder. But the story continues to dominate the headlines.

To start with, we now know a fair bit more about the attacker, David DePape. He is a far-right MAGA man who often used social media to share unhinged rants about the things that people like that rant about. He entered the Pelosis' house with a supply of plastic ties; the same equipment carried by some of the the 1/6 insurrectionists. DePape has already given a statement to law enforcement laying out his "plan":

DEPAPE stated that he was going to hold Nancy hostage and talk to her. If Nancy were to tell DEPAPE the "truth," he would let her go, and if she "lied," he was going to break "her kneecaps." DEPAPE was certain that Nancy would not have told the "truth." In the course of the interview, DEPAPE articulated he viewed Nancy as the "leader of the pack" of lies told by the Democratic Party. DEPAPE also later explained that by breaking Nancy's kneecaps, she would then have to be wheeled into Congress, which would show other Members of Congress there were consequences to actions. DEPAPE also explained generally that he wanted to use Nancy to lure another individual to DEPAPE.

Not exactly a model of mental stability. Nor of mental ability, for that matter, since it's not hard to figure out that whenever the Speaker is actually at home, she's protected by a security detail that is more than capable of dealing with a hammer-wielding bandit.

DePape has already been hit with state and federal charges, including attempted murder, attempted kidnapping, burglary, elder abuse, and false imprisonment. Either he's going to be judged guilty or he's going to be judged mentally defective. Either way, he's going away for a long time, the only question is whether the walls in his new residence will be made of iron or rubber.

Meanwhile, if you read the statement above, the connection between Trumpian rhetoric and DePape's actions could not be plainer. Of course, outside of a few pariah-exceptions like Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), nobody in the Republican Party is willing to to acknowledge that link and to talk about what needs to change. Instead, we're seeing the standard reactions to situations like this one:

This is pretty much the same set of responses that you see from Republicans after a school shooting. That is not a coincidence; they know full well that they have blood on their hands, and they're desperately trying to muddy the waters to hide that fact. Unfortunately, this parallel also tells us that not one damn thing is going to change when it comes to the violent rhetoric, which means we continue to barrel toward the day when some political leader is killed by one of these sickos. (Z)

This item appeared on Read it Monday through Friday for political and election news, Saturday for answers to reader's questions, and Sunday for letters from readers.                     All Senate races