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Friday, July 30, 2021

A violent end to a hot election?

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Angry graffiti at site of firebombing of a GOP election headquarters in Orange County, North Carolina. (NBC News)
Angry graffiti at site of firebombing of a GOP election headquarters in Orange County, North Carolina. (NBC News)

The already nasty political season took a predicted violent turn Sunday when an apparent firebomb engulfed the Republican headquarters in Orange County, North Carolina,, and someone spray-painted  swastika and the words “Nazi Republicans leave town or else” on a nearby wall.

Bombastic GOP candidate Donald Trump quickly tried to blame his opponent for the attack, Tweeting “animals representing Hillary Clinton and Dems in North Carolina just firebombed our office in Orange County because we are winning.”

Ironic, and hypocritical rhetoric from Trump, who laces his speeches with anger, threats of attacks and incitements of violent repercussions if he loses his currently faltering quest for the Presidency.

Posts on social media predict violence when Trump goes down in flames on election day.

Some recent posts point to a Boston Globe story:

Anger and hostility were the most overwhelming sentiments at a Trump rally in Cincinnati last week, a deep sense of frustration, an us-versus-them mentality, and a belief that they are part of an unstoppable and underestimated movement. Unlike many in the country, however, these hard-core Trump followers do not believe the real estate mogul’s misfortunes are of his own making.

At Trump’s often incendiary rallies, supporters wear t-shirts that say “Trump that bitch” and others with stronger obscene expletives.  The Arizona Republic, which had always endorsed the Republican candidate for President throughout its history, gave its nod to Democrat Clinton this year and the editor of the paper is now receiving death threats.

The Globe in Boston continues:

And if Trump doesn’t win, some are even openly talking about violent rebellion and assassination, as fantastical and unhinged as that may seem.

“If she’s in office, I hope we can start a coup. She should be in prison or shot. That’s how I feel about it,” Dan Bowman, a 50-year-old contractor, said of Hillary Clinton, the Democratic nominee. “We’re going to have a revolution and take them out of office if that’s what it takes. There’s going to be a lot of bloodshed. But that’s what it’s going to take. . . . I would do whatever I can for my country.”

Trump strokes such anger and peppers his speeches with rants about conspiracies against him, while avoiding ever accepting responsibility for his antics and actions.

Writes The Huffington Post:

President Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and their top aides, along with leaders on Capitol Hill, worry about the preview Trump is providing in this final month, part kamikaze mission to take down Clinton, part temper tantrum by a man who has never been embarrassed on either this scale or spotlight.

They worry about how his egged-on followers might respond, and the violence — perhaps against Muslims, Latinos or any of the many other groups he has targeted in his campaign rhetoric — that might follow.

“People do dangerous things when dangerous leaders foment deep resentment,” said Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.).

No daily newspaper in America has endorsed Trump for President, an unprecedented moment in a presidential campaign.  Most, like the Arizona Republican, have endorsed Clinton while others — like The Richmond Times-Dispatch — gave their nod to Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson or others chose to make no endorsement.

Many express shock of the religious right and evangelicals who support and endorse Trump. Columnist Jeff Jacoby says that will come back to haunt them:

It will take a long time to assess the full extent of the damage wrought by Donald Trump on the Republican Party and American conservatism. But this much is already clear: Buried under the post-election wreckage will be the moral credibility of the religious right.

Hypocrisy and politics have gone hand in hand since time immemorial. But the embrace of Trump by influential religious conservatives — who have always insisted that they, like Hebrew National, answer to a higher authority — is orders of magnitude worse than the customary flip-flopping and sail-trimming of a presidential campaign.

The Moral Majority’s roots like in nearby Lynchburg with its founding and promotion by the late Jerry Falwell, the fire-breathing Baptist preacher and founder of Liberty University, where students are protesting the support of Trump by current President Jerry Falwell, Jr.

Other college Republican groups have turned against the national party for its support of Trump.

Meanwhile, Trump is on full charge against anyone and everyone.  Reports The Washington Post:

He is preaching to the converted. He is lashing out at anyone who is not completely loyal. He is detaching himself from and delegitimizing the institutions of American political life. And he is proclaiming conspiracies everywhere — in polls (rigged), in debate moderators (biased) and in the election itself (soon to be stolen).

In the presidential campaign’s home stretch, Donald Trump is fully inhabiting his own echo chamber. The Republican nominee has turned inward, increasingly isolated from the country’s mainstream and leaders of his own party, and determined to rouse his most fervent supporters with dire warnings that their populist movement could fall prey to dark and collusive forces.

Hold on to your seats.  This ride is almost over but it will be a rocky one.

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Copyright © 2016 Capitol Hill Blue

3 thoughts on “A violent end to a hot election?”

  1. After months of the DNC and Clinton campaign fomenting violence at Trump rallies people are surprised there is violence? Doug, you seem to missing a big piece of the story here. Yeah Trump stirred the pot and got a bunch of apolitical people involved who I am sure lots of people would rather they not be involved. The RNC after years of deceptions and lying to its supporters and just being DNC light has caused quite a bit of anger among the people who thought they actually stood for something. The RNC will be hurt in the long term by the Trump campaign but they freaking deserve it. These stories about revolution and violence at the results is just a bunch of click bait and a coordinated attempt by the media to try to help the Clinton get out the vote campaign. There was a time when you wouldn’t fall so easily for this stuff. Or are you know getting your stories and passing copy to the DNC and the Clinton campaign like Politico, NYT, et al?

  2. One thing people seem to be unaware of is that threatening to assassinate the president or overthrow the elected US administration by force are NOT political opinions protected by the 1st Amendment: Both are felonies, and people making these statements in public forums are likely to be charged and convicted.

    And it doesn’t matter if “you didn’t mean it”, or were “just spouting off”. The speech itself is the crime.

  3. He’s going to lose and lose badly, what his hardcore is going to do on election day and after it though has many people worried. If he sends these people to the polls on election day armed and dangerous to try and intimidate anyone they think is a possible Clinton voter we could have an emergency in some areas of the country. Will it win him the election , NO it won’t , but it could be a scary moment and innocent people might be harmed or even killed. After the election if he doesn’t graciously accept his defeat and threatens to go to court , a very likely scenario given his recent rhetoric then were in unknown territory indeed. My guess, is that we wouldn’t formally have a President elect then till the Electoral College gets together and vote, whenever that is?

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