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. TC

    All I have to say is Yeah... right... Repubs have sunk so low... this is just a way to try and deflect from the violence going on towards dems. It was prob. your own people. and if that is the case release the messages so the public can understand the "threats"

    March 25, 2010 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  2. bill samuels

    Fanning the flames!! –by having black members of the Congress spit upon!!

    a shanda on you !!

    March 25, 2010 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Dominic

    I'm not surprised. This guys is so full of crap in enrages me.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Jav

    Why is anyone targeting house republicans? They lost the healthcare battle. Is it right wing extremists angry that Cantor and crew were unable to bring down the bill? doesn't make sense otherwise. I hope hope hope this is not a right wing ploy to downplay the threats democrats have received since passage of the bill!!!...but then again I wouldn't be surprised.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Angel M

    If true, Eric Cantor is reaping the benefits of the seed that the Republican party members have planted in the minds of extremists out there since Barack Obama became Presisident. I do not feel a bit sorry for him and I hope they realize how irrelevant the Republican party and its members have become. They'all should be ashamed of themselves setting such a negative example for the younger generation.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  6. shrugginatlas

    oh snap, you mean the democrat operatives found time to leave hit republicans as well? I thought their orders from the big money liberal where to threaten other Dems and make it smell like it was from a republicans. You know, like how in Colorado a democrat threw a rock through the window of a DNC office, have CNN breathlessly report on it but then never follow up when it was found that it was a scheme by dems. That is how twisted liberals are, they will attack their own just to make it look like the other side.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  7. SUSAN J.

    Oh please – Cantor – you started it. Dems fanning the flames – you are so full of crap. You and your teabaggers started it. Grow up.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  8. HMaloney

    Democrats are fanning the flames? By reporting a crime?

    Hateful violence like this (including the violence against Congressman Cantor) needs to be made public and the perpetrators need to be caught and punished – not brushed under the covers like it never happened. Shame on Congressman Cantor.

    There is a civil way to disagree with someone- hurling bricks, cutting gas lines and shooting guns is not acceptable.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Truther

    This is what happens when the waking public decides they won't take it anymore. But violence is not the answer. A peaceful revolt is key.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  10. EG


    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Mike

    Get rid of them all.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Mark Smith

    Germany 1931, having lost in regional and parlimentary elections the Nazi brownshirts begin a series of intimidation attacks against members of the German Parliment, thanks conservatives for showing your true colors.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  13. JPX

    Perhaps Palin should take down the gun scopes on her webpage. You can't have it both ways; you can't incite violence via horrible people like Palin, Beck, Limbaugh, etc., and then be outraged at the consequences. The GOP have only themselves to blame for all the hate out there. What a disgusting party.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Hannah

    Remember when Tom Dschle's office received the envelope with Anthrax right after 9-11? They never really resolved that one and the guy that was supposed to have done it conveniently committed suicide. Given that the Anthrax was government made weapons strength you have to wonder.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Jim

    Eric, Eric, Eric.

    Do you really expect us to believe that some idiotic, foaming at the mouth, right wing, racist, tea party, nitwit targeted you for not voting for the Health Care bill? That's beyond ridiculous. You're the poster boy for those numbskulls. And, by the way, please take that black shoe polish out of your hair. You look like a damn fool.

    March 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
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