Congressional Republicans should not spend even five seconds doing national media interviews with bad faith outlets like CNN.
The shootings left 30 people dead and over 50 injured.
“In one voice, our nation must condemn racism, bigotry and white supremacy,” Trump said during a speech in which he expressed support for, among other things, mental health law reforms and red-flag laws.
But while Trump as a national leader made the decision to appear before the cameras to talk about the tragedies, condemn hatred and bigotry, and discuss ideas he believes will combat hate and gun violence, House and Senate Republicans have been decidedly more guarded when it comes to engagement with the mainstream media on this issue.
Their approach is understandable for a variety of reasons, especially when you consider how they were treated after the Parkland shootings as though they had pulled the trigger themselves.
CNN’s Jake Tapper, who conducted the sham televised Parkland town hall that took place exactly one week after 17 people were killed, took a moment on Sunday to note that Republican officials in Ohio, Texas, and the White House had declined his requests for interviews:
“We should note that we invited the Republican governor, lieutenant governor and both Republican U.S. senators representing Texas to join us this morning. They all declined,” Tapper said before speaking with his guests on Sunday.
“The Republican governor of Ohio also declined. We also asked the White House to provide someone to discuss these shootings. That request too was declined,” he added.
Watch Tapper talk about the shootings and the Republicans who declined to appear on CNN below:
— State of the Union (@CNNSotu) August 4, 2019
Other journalists amplified the “news” about Republicans who opted out of appearing before national news media cameras to discuss what happened:
Why are so many republicans ducking this? There are no sides to condemning hate and wanting white nats included in all terror laws, is there? Be part of the solution! This effort is an obvious opportunity to come together!
— Christopher C. Cuomo (@ChrisCuomo) August 5, 2019
Wow. CNN says it reached out to 50 GOP lawmakers this morning; 49 declined to appear on air to discuss the El Paso and Dayton shootings. Only Rep. Ted Yoho (R-Fla.), who’s on now, said yes. Yesterday, Jake Tapper similarly highlighted GOPers who declined to appear on @CNNSotu
— Felicia Sonmez (@feliciasonmez) August 5, 2019
I responded to Sonmez’s tweet with a reminder about the likely reason Republicans were being cautious:
Appearing in media interviews to express sincere condolences only to be labeled as sellout tools of the NRA with "blood on their hands" would not exactly be my way of addressing this weekend's tragedies, either. https://t.co/dDJKdCfgGw
— Sister Toldjah Le Pew 😁 (@sistertoldjah) August 5, 2019
The rhetoric from the left has gotten really nasty and vicious, and it would appear Republicans do not want any part of it.
Former El Paso Congressman Beto O’Rourke, for example, has gone off the deep end in blaming Trump for El Paso and Dayton, and has once again compared the Trump administration to the Third Reich as he did back in April.
In a Senate fundraising appeal, 2020 presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren (MA) trotted out the insulting insinuation today about how Republicans care more about campaign contributions from gun rights groups than they do their fellow Americans:
Republicans won’t act—because gun lobbyists are signing their checks. We must take back the Senate in 2020.
Will you chip in to help elect Democrats to the Senate? Let’s build a grassroots movement to beat back the gun lobby and end gun violence. https://t.co/1DWpKHJivA
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) August 5, 2019
And Sen. Bernie Sanders (VT), like other Democrats and their media enablers, is still lying about Trump’s Charlottesville comments:
Bernie Sanders: "On a personal level, seeing an American president describe people marching under a swastika as 'good people' fills me with anger and disgust. But that anger has to be channeled into nonviolent political action." https://t.co/NGMy2DS42q
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) August 5, 2019
The mainstream media has no interest in correcting the record on Charlottesville because they’re too busy joining the Democratic chorus in their deliberate misinformation campaign.
On top of left-wing politicians and their non-stop demagoguery, liberal commentators are rushing to the cameras and social media to accuse Republicans of having blood on their hands because they have the audacity to disagree with them on gun control. Oftentimes, journalists like Cuomo join in on the bashing, suggesting Republicans would rather pocket NRA cash than prevent future gun deaths.
It’s a toxic environment right now for Republicans, with a lot of volatile emotions at play. Frankly I wouldn’t blame them for not wanting to be subjected to vile accusations that they are to blame for the senseless deaths that happened over the weekend. If they’re smart, they won’t spend even 5 seconds talking to anyone in the national media about this issue.
As the appalling CNN town hall from last year demonstrated, most national media journalists and Democrats in reality have no genuine interest in bringing all sides together on this issue. It’s their way way only, and if you don’t comply you are “complicit” in future tragedies and are a “willing accomplice” to Trump’s alleged “white supremacist tendencies” etc, etc.
Republicans should focus on their own communities, hold area town halls if necessary, reconnect with their constituents, and do interviews on local news stations if asked. That will accomplish a whole lot more than futile attempts at defending themselves in gotcha interviews with national media outlets.
— Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym “Sister Toldjah” and can be reached via Twitter. —DONATE
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