March 25th, 2010
01:52 PM ET

House GOP No. 2: Someone shot at my office

[Updated 1:49 p.m.] A Richmond police spokeswoman confirmed to CNN that a bullet was fired at Rep. Eric Cantor's campaign office.

"We are investigating the circumstance surrounding it," police spokeswoman Karla Peters said. Cantor disclosed the incident to reporters Thursday.

Cantor also accused Democrats of "fanning the flames" of violence by using threats that have been made against Democratic members "as political weapons." Democrats immediately hit back against Cantor's accusation, repeating their allegations that Republicans are at fault.

"We disagree with the charge made by Rep. Cantor today that Democrats are using acts of violence for political gain," said Brad Woodhouse, a spokesman for the Democratic National Committee.

"Let's be clear: calling on Republican leaders who have contributed in part to this anger by wildly mischaracterizing the substance and motives of health reform to condemn these acts is entirely appropriate. Instead distracting from the issue with more attacks, we would again ask Mr. Cantor and other Republicans ... to ratchet down the rhetoric, condemn deplorable behavior and find ways to disagree on these issues without the charged rhetoric that we've been hearing from Republican leaders."

[Posted at 12:33 p.m.] Rep. Eric Cantor, the number two Republican in the House of Representatives, said Thursday that a bullet had been shot through a window at his district office in Richmond, Virginia. He also said he had received threatening messages.

He said he would not publicly release the messages out of concern that doing so would only incite further violence.

He also accused Democratic National Committee Chairman Tim Kaine and Rep. Chris Van Hollen of Maryland - a member of the Democratic House leadership - of "fanning the flames" of violence by using threats that have been made against Democratic members "as political weapons."

"Legitimate threats should be treated as security issues, and they should be dealt with by the appropriate law enforcement officials," Cantor told reporters on Capitol Hill. "It is reckless to use these incidents as media vehicles for political gain. ... Enough is enough. It has to stop."

Cantor, who is Jewish, said he had received numerous threats throughout his career both on account of his religion and his position in the GOP leadership.

More than 10 Democrats have reported trouble since the weekend health care vote, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland, told reporters on Wednesday.

Windows have been smashed at Democratic offices in at least three states, and federal agents are investigating whether a cut gas line at the home of a Virginia congressman's brother was related to the lawmaker's yes vote.

Democratic congressional leaders have demanded Republicans join them in condemning a spate of threats and vandalism that has followed Sunday's vote on  a sweeping overhaul of the U.S. health care system.

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Filed under: Health Care • Politics
soundoff (457 Responses)
  1. Perecorp

    Cantor you are a joke and exactly what is wrong with Congress. Eye and eye right?

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Scott

    Oh, so NOW he is concerned about all the slurs, name calling, the pathetic behavior, and the violence against members of Congress.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  3. jermaine

    So This guy does not want to release the proof but the
    same kind of stuff is happening to the dems they show the proof.

    I think this guy is just talking bull.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Carleen Rove

    too bad!

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  5. NRen25k5

    So um... this is the Democrats' fault because they've complained about being threatened too?

    I've seen some pretty absurd Republican logic in the last 8 years, but wow... just WOW.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Barbara

    Now that the shoe is on the other foot, they're crying foul! Remember that what goes around, comes around. You were not concerned when it was the other side that was viscerally scared, but you and your ilk incited it.

    Be careful what you wish for.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Rilely

    This is impeccable timing and I would bet that it is a hoax by the GOP to have a "you too" moment related to all of the right-wing threats and violence that have occurred. Of course he does not want to release any information.

    I would call for an independent investigation on the truth and accuracy of this statement.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Mark Johnson

    ~This is crazy and has to stop NOW. This goes far beyond lack of "civility" this is a crime. The FBI needs to find these animals and bring them to justice now.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Independent

    I strongly doubt that Mr. Cantor.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Jay

    The GOP has fanned the flames of fear - it's their speciality.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Erik H.

    It's better to blame the other party, than to come together and denounce senseless violence. Of course the Repubs aren't going to condemn all the violence, just blame the Dems for attacks on GOPers, and not apologize (and encourage) attacks the other way.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  12. bert

    Sorry, don't believe him.

    Republican Hypocrisy has eroded any trust I may have had for this party.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  13. peppanicky

    Oh...and just as a sidebar.......

    March 25, 2010 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Lil Red

    Funny how he is saying enough is enough but it's fine when his fellow republican egg on the mob. I haven't heard him speak out about Sarah Palin's "reload" comment or many of the other less than appropriate comments from various republicans.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Kelly

    What else do you people expect? You stoke the flames of hate and then consider yourselves exempt from your own actions?

    You have GOT to stop supporting fringe groups. All of you!

    March 25, 2010 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
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