Is Ed Schultz really this dumb or simply incapable of honesty?
Within the first 10 minutes of his radio show yesterday, Schultz was bellowing about an alleged connection between the massacre in Tucson and remarks by Rep. Michele Bachman, House candidate Jesse Kelly and other Republicans (audio) --
SCHULTZ (initially referring to Congresswoman Giffords' medical condition): The latest medical update is she is responding, it's been consistent since they started to try to get responses out of her, which is very positive. But if you want to talk about the political climate in this country, if you really want think the conversation in this country plays into the fear-mongering, or should we say that the conversation in this country leads to the angst and the anger, well then hell, let's just have that conversation. In fact, let's go back to Jesse Kelly. Any of you know who Jesse Kelly is? Here's a name that hasn't been thrown out during the coverage. He was Giffords' tea party opponent! Congresswoman Giffords! Ran against Jesse Kelly! Now listen to what he said during the campaign.
Schultz then played this clip of remarks from Kelly during the campaign --
KELLY: We don't need to be running for office to enhance our own power. This country is in trouble and liberalism is ripping this nation apart and I'm tired of Republicans playing namby-pamby politics with it. It's time to engage the enemy. We have lost ground for so long, we are done losing ground in this nation. We're about to start taking ground and we're done being afraid of this government. It's time for them to be afraid of us.
SCHULTZ: Now that was Congresswoman Giffords' opponent during the last election. Do you think the community was angst a little bit? Do you understand now why the sheriff down there came out and said what he said?! I got another dandy one for you! She's an all-star psycho talker from Minnesota. Michele Bachmann, you want to be president of the United States?! Maybe you should step out in front of the microphones today and condemn this comment that you made in March of 2009.
BACHMANN (in radio interview): Really now in Washington, I'm a foreign correspondent on enemy lines and I try to let everyone back here in Minnesota know exactly the mysterious activities that are taking place in Washington. I want people in Minnesota armed and dangerous on this issue of the energy tax because we need to fight back. Thomas Jefferson told us having a revolution every now and then is a good thing. And the people, we the people, are going to have to fight back hard if we're not going to lose our country.
SCHULTZ: Now this elected official from Idaho, I believe, that was on "Meet the Press" (GOP Rep. Raul Labrador) yesterday says it's both sides. I challenge any right-wing talker, correspondent, talk show host, cable dude, whatever! If you can find anybody in the Democratic Party that would match the sound bites of the last two sound bites that we just played for you, I sure would like to give commentary on it. But you see, they don't exist. You can't find a Democrat in the last two years that's talked like that.
Unless, that is, you looked back at rhetoric from that most ubiquitous of Democrats, the president himself, as Victor Davis Hanson helpfully did over at NRO. In a Jan. 9 post aptly titled "Political Vultures," Hanson writes --
There is much talk that Sarah Palin's "crosshairs" ad pushed Loughner over the edge. But if sloppy use of gun metaphors can drive anyone to shoot congressional representatives, think what we are up against when the president of the United States invokes violent imagery to galvanize his supporters. What are we to make of Obama's warning of "hand-to-hand combat" (emphasis added and throughout) if the Republicans take over; or his comments that one of his supporters could "tear [Sean Hannity] up"; or his Untouchables boast that "if they bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun"; or his advice to supporters of his presidential campaign to argue with Republicans and "get in their face"?
Why would a president boast about figuring out "whose ass to kick," or, in a climate of fear about terrorism, call his opponents "hostage takers"? In a post 9/11 world, is it prudent for the commander-in-chief to say of his political opponents, "Here's the problem: It's almost like they've got -- they've got a bomb strapped to them and they've got their hand on the trigger. You don't want them to blow up"? What about, "But you've got to kind of talk to them, ease that finger off the trigger"?
Also, in a political twofer, Obama once not only evoked gun imagery, but did so in a context of relegating Republicans into second-class citizenry: "We can't have special interests sitting shotgun. We gotta have middle class families sitting up in front. We don't mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back."
Second example, courtesy of my NewsBusters colleague Noel Sheppard and this post he wrote yesterday, which included these eyebrow-raising remarks from former Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., referring to Republican gubernatorial candidate Rick Scott, as reported by the (Scranton) Times-Tribune on Oct. 23 --
"That Scott down there that's running for governor," Mr. Kanjorski said. "Instead of running for governor of Florida, they ought to have him and shoot him. Put him up against the wall and shoot him. (emphasis added) He stole billions of dollars from the United States government and he's running for governor of Florida. He's a millionaire and a billionaire. He's a damn crook. It's just we don't prosecute big crooks."
Your turn, Ed -- cite two examples of questionable rhetoric from Democrats that you've condemned. Seeing how I've just provided you with a pair, so to speak, and your oft-stated affection for NewsBusters, you won't have to look far.