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.

Post by:
Filed under: Health Care • Politics
soundoff (457 Responses)
  1. CeeVee

    Is there any proof of Cantor's claim? I'm just wondering since the Republican leaders' only response thus far to violence of the part of their followers has been to say it's happening on both sides rather than condemning the actions.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Nick

    Please, Eric release the tapes. If not, it sounds like you are lying.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Ron

    Kudos to CNN on this one. I really expected an attack on a ranking GOP member to be overlooked.

    The people of this nation are angry and some are showing it in a violent manner. Everyone knows that there is that element in our society.

    But those individuals cross party lines.

    Ms Pelosi said it has no place in a "Civil Debate".

    Ms. Pelosi, what happened on Sunday was neither "Civil" nor a "Debate".

    It was a chicago-type lynching of our constitution.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Joel

    Can we please ratchet back the rhetoric before someone gets killed?

    March 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  5. frank

    wow, and only when it happens to a republican do they become outraged

    March 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  6. max

    you reap what you sew cantor ... his memory is remarkably shallow for such a young man ... the current violence against the dems can be traced to HIS remarks not long ago as he stood up and lied and grandstanded on the floor ... can't condone it, but he asked for it

    March 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  7. conniesz

    He should definitely release whatever threats he has received – it is disgusting that any public official should receive such threats. He needs to help law enforcement find these thugs and bring them to justice. It is wrong to threaten anyone, Democrat or Republican, and anyone receiving such a threat should cooperate with law enforcement to the fullest.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Dan Holiday

    I bet this will end up being buried asap. How can the Dems claim it is conservative operatives doing this when it is happening to the GOP as well?

    March 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Jeff_H

    wait – what?! did i miss something here? democrats fanning the flames of violence and a bullet shot through a republican office? this seems, at first glance, like a typical GOP maneuver - how to invert reality through the old shitch-eroo. like jeff sessions asking sotomayor if she harbored any "racial biases"...

    March 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Jack

    I don't condone this violence, but WHEN will the idiots in Washington realize we've had enough!?! What will it take to open their eyes? They're supposed to be there for us, but all they can think about is power and corporate money!

    March 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Jim Rousch

    Either Cantor is making this story up or member of the Tea Party member was too drunk when he shot his gun off.

    Those are the only explanations.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  12. cman

    this is crazy people the violence needs to stop what will violence solve?

    March 25, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  13. mayres

    and the liberals are calling the Tea party crazy!

    March 25, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  14. scott

    So when Ann Coulter is banned from speaking and riots are threatened against her that is never complained about by the media???? How low will the liberal media and the democrats go to paint everyone who does not agree with Obama as a racist. Is that the best arguement they have? People that love this Country know that Obama is a threat to the Constitution.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Anti

    What is this , a joke? Who has been fanning the flames and inciting violence since Mr. Obama became president. This man is true definition of a hypocrate. In fact the entire GOP is full of them.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31