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. Eric

    Eric Cantor may be lying, but he may be telling the truth as well.

    However, I'm certainly suspicious of his claim if he is unwilling to release at least a police report. Certainly he did file one of those... If so, hopefully someone was charged for this attack?

    March 25, 2010 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Aaron P

    To this date, I have never witnessed on the news, a Democrat outside of a Republican rally carrying a gun or assault rifle. I have never witnessed Democrats calling Republicans any Derogatory name as they walked to their offices. I have never seen a Democrat spit in the face of a Republican. I have never seen Democrats outside of a Republican function with the Republican leaders face painted to look like Hitler, or an African bushman. Socialist, Communist, Nigger, Send The Mexicans Home, He's gonna take away my guns, He's gonna take away my property, Defeat this Bastards. Sound familiar? Not words from Democrats. These and many others are the direct words from Reublican leaders and their white trash, neo-nazi, race-bating followers. They have pushed their rhetoric so far that this is the outcome. It is the Republicans that should take blame for the guy that flew that plane into those offices in Austin. This is all on their shoulders. Hypocrites!!! The republicans have never stood for anything decent unless it affected them directly. Seniors, here me well. The Democrats have always had your back. Social Security and Medicatre are Democrat issues and have always been. The Repubs did not give a damn aboput you until they figured out how to play you for fools. They do not have your best interests at heart. One day, as fate will have it, not in 2012 though, The Republicans will be in charge again. They will drop you like a bad habit. Then who will you have? My latino friends. Abortion rights is no reason to go Republican. I once saw tea-partiers at a rally on t.v. When asked what they wanted the government to do about illegal immigrants here, one shouted, "Send them all back". When asked who he was referring to, he said "all of em". But what about the ones born here? asked the reporter, "Them too. They all eventually got here illegally", stated the tea-partier. This is definately a racist Republican party. I challenge anyone to "You-Tube" the Republican convention. Try and find a black person in that whole arena on any day. By the way, Michael Steele is not a Black Man. Just sayin

    March 25, 2010 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Mr.Bs

    The Health reform side won! Get over it, this is what we call a democracy . Majority won!

    March 25, 2010 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Dan

    When I was a child my mother taught that two wrongs never made a right. On the other hand, if you're going to start a fire, ther's a good chance of you getting burned. Mr. GQ Cantor and his dittoheads started the fire, fanned the flames since Obama and the Dems took control, and now blames the Dems! Does he really thing that your avarage American is going to be stupid enough to fall for this? Wait a minute...hmmm – then again, I dunno – they elected Bush/Cheney twice and over 40% backed McCain/Palin. I fear for this nation.

    March 25, 2010 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Siara Delyn

    Note to Eric Cantor's staff:

    Democrats don't carry guns around like your constituents (like, did you ever notice that those protesters at your pro-gun rallies are DEMOCRATS?).

    If someone shot through your window it was probably one of your own constituents who didn't think you were right wing enough.

    This is an obvious attempt to deflect attention from the fact that the GOP has riled up a violent, dangerous segment of the population. They're trying to pretend that both sides carry guns and are violent. They're trying to pretend we're all guilty of inciting violence.

    The Democrats don't carry guns around. Cantor staff, if you want to concoct a lie about us at least come up with a believable one. This one your pushing now is an insult to the American public.

    March 25, 2010 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Scalliwag

    @Ben, I guess McVeigh was a "liberal" too? The guy that attacked the IRS building? You're a funny guy 🙂

    March 25, 2010 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  7. no one's fool

    Probably a confused tea bagger gone awry.

    March 25, 2010 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  8. D

    "horrible things they're seeing on tv from the Tea Baggers who spit on and shouted racial slurs at civil rights icons over the weekend"

    This is an allegation at best and even if it were true, a few nutjobs are not representative of the lawful Teabaggers that know how to protest peacefully. You can do your part in not falling victim to sensationalist news by not echoing the actions of a demented few.

    March 25, 2010 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Cvale

    This Cantor fella' stretches credulity,,if indeed there was a shot taken at one of his offices I would proffer the shot came from one of his own interns in hopes of deflecting the blame for the results of his incendiary rhetoric. Words have consequences, consequences which Eric Cantor wants to have deniability of. He is a liars liar, a coward at best, and a bigoted bastard at his worst. I would need to see the video of the culprit taking that supposed shot and then have the perpetrator pass a lie detector test wherein he denies Cantor didn't pay him for the mayhem ! This is a guy whom when confronted with an accusation , would point the finger at his own mother! Are we to believe anything coming from his lying pie hole? I think not. He is part and parcel of a group of old white guys who can't come to grips with the fact the civil war was lost and yes we do indeed have a black man at the helm of this nation who is all of our citizens' president. I say to them get over it and move on with your lives but I'd be wasting my breath as these folks will never accept reality and will choose to live in the past when everything was theirs! Cantor and his ilk are an embarrassment to the nation and should be called out for what they really are as often as possible.

    March 25, 2010 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Guest

    This article needs to be updated to show that, not only was the building "shot at" one of his campaign offices, but that Richmond P.D. is reporting that the bullet was not shot at his office, but instead into the air. The bullet tumbled downward and struck the window, causing it to break. The bullet didn't even penetrate the window's blinds.

    Good job over-exaggerating, Republicans, instead of renouncing the actual violence going on thanks to the teabaggers.

    March 25, 2010 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |
  11. 193

    This is a so-called civilized country? Disgusting!!!

    March 25, 2010 at 5:18 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Piornet

    The shooter was just exercising their Second Amendment rights and expressing their desire for a smaller government.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:46 pm | Report abuse |
  13. David

    According to the police report, the bullet came in at a downward trajectory and landed on the floor of the office a foot away from the window. In other words, someone shot a gun in to the air, and it randomly hit Cantor's office.

    Of course Republicans are going to do their best to cover this up, but hopefully this will be reported.

    March 25, 2010 at 7:20 pm | Report abuse |
  14. anika4

    Is he telling Americans not to report crimes anymore? Sounds down-right unAmerican to me

    March 25, 2010 at 8:13 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Sharon

    I have no doubt that the bullet was fired by the right wing. Nixon did this sort of thing too when things got too hot for him. We'll soon see more "attacks" on the right, staged by the right. Cantor is great at blaming the victim, but how does this look to the "average" honest American, as opposed to his supporters?

    March 25, 2010 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
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