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. Ramcha

    Mr. Cantor

    Who you are trying kidding?

    March 25, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Alan Q

    This is a lie.

    The most ardent and vocal critic and opposer of this bill has no reason to be shot at by anyone.

    In order to divert attention from those being genuinely harrassed and those who are genuinely under fire, this man is trying to make out like he, too, is some martry to some cause.

    The man is lying.

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

    Manufactured...

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

    Not to say he is not telling the truth, I just wonder where all of this violence has come from. Sara Palin's remarks "we do not retreat, we reload" is doing nothing but promoting violence. I truly believe she is a dangerous woman, and that is fanning faster than reporting violence that has acctually occured.

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

    I honestly cannot believe how grown men and women can be so HATEFUL! I am guessing that harsh words have always been common in the House since the beginning of time, it is evident, except NOW we have the MEDIA. What is this nation coming to? I am ashamed of our politicians and the want-to-bes.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jeffrey of Texas

    Cantor is lying. Plain and simple. This is an example of how desparate the GOP is to deflect the criticism they have received since the Health Care Bill was passed in the House and the Tea Baggers showed their true confederate colors.

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

    ya know.. i just watched a breakdown of americans who support the healthcare bill and who don't. those results revealed that most americans actually do support the bill and that the only majority that didn't were ppl 65 and up who are already on medicaid (a minority of those surveyed). so to me that says the GOP is incorrect in preaching that this is not what the American people want. The tea baggers don't really help when they go around spreading misinformation and getting already motivated people more riled up about things that are incorrect. Its just flat out irresponsible.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Mike Northrop

    Did Sara Paline post his address on Facebook.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  9. prouddem

    Once again the republicans throw stones and point fingers saying they didn't do it. But they forget that a lot of what they've said and done was on the evening news. People on the web, on the radio and everywhere else calling for violence and acts against congressmen and they're not arrested? Oh yeah, freedom of speech. Hide behind the constitution. Arround here we call that terroristic threats and someone usually ends up being charged. Terrorists?? hmmmm. bin laden has to be laughing his ass off. Oh yeah, and did anyone see good old GW wipe his hand on clinton after shaking hands with Haitian earthquake victims? that guy belongs on an island with palin. maybe they could do a reality show together. now what would be the title? hmmm.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  10. dg

    Violence of any kind, directed at any person or political symbol, is wholly unacceptable. It must be rejected by officials and leaders of every poltical stripe, and it must be rejected by the grass roots as well. There is no place for violence in our system of government.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  11. gale godfrey

    sounds to me that his story has been made up to take some of the heat away from them.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  12. ed

    It's those crazy coffee party people again, being whipped into a frenzy by the crazy rhetoric spewed by the liberal left.
    Someone needs to do something about the message coming out of the democratic side before this leads to more extreme acts by their followers.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Walter

    So according to Congressman Kanter (whose account of the facts I do not readily take at face value) someone shot at his office because Democrats have object to violence and death threats coming from the right.

    So isn't he concerned that his complaints will cause people to shoot out the windows of Democratic congressmen's offices? According to his logic, he should stay quiet about threats or violence himself because opposing them encourages them.

    Typical Republican thinking. Up is down, white is black, I can't be wrong because you can't be right.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Alan in Ak

    What a warped piece of logic that is: the repubs incite violence and then blame the dems when the people that they incite "maybe" hit them. What a wonderful world Rep Cantor must live in.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Kim

    Are you kidding me? The Democrats are fanning the flames by protesting the threats against them. Guess they should just shut up and take it, huh Cantor. Unlike you who is blaming the wrong people. It's your beloved Tea Baggers who are behind all this craziness.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
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