Ruth Marcus has come close to blaming Republicans for the Colorado Springs shootings. Appearing on Jose Diaz-Balart's MSNBC show today, Washington Post columnist Marcus said that "the Republican candidates . . . have been part of the inflamed and inflammatory rhetoric about Planned Parenthood, about the sale of baby parts, about dismembering live babies . . . I think it's a fair conclusion, especially based on his . . . alleged mentioning of 'no more baby parts,' that this kind of rhetoric helped create this environment."
Really? Is there no room for people--without being accused of inflaming people to commit murder--to express their opposition to abortion and to the largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood? To state what the videos indisputably demonstrate: that among other things that PP was in the business of selling baby body parts?
Note that when Diaz-Balart challenged Marcus on the notion that the Republicans could be responsible for the actions of a deranged person, she at first backed off but then circled back to suggest that Republicans nevertheless were responsible for giving deranged people "an outlet for their derangement."
RUTH MARCUS: The Republican candidates have been very, very quiet about this shooting, this horrible shooting for an obvious reason, which is, they have been part of the inflamed and inflammatory rhetoric about Planned Parenthood, about the sale of baby parts, about dismembering live babies which is not accurate, not what was shown on the videos.
And when you use inflammatory rhetoric, you inflame people. And I think we don't know exactly what this shooter was all about, but I think it's a fair conclusion, especially based on his mentioning of "no more baby parts," alleged mentioning of no more baby parts, that this kind of rhetoric that helped create this environment.
DIAZ-BALART: So is it what the shooter says, even though he may be deranged, that you think has a direct link, correlation with what the campaign rhetoric has been all about? Because if that's the formula, there have been a lot of people who've said some pretty outrageous things that you can't really tie to the national discourse.
MARCUS: Well, let me make myself clear. People who are deranged are not responsible for their own behavior, so certainly candidates are not responsible for the behavior of deranged people. However, when you exaggerate the rhetoric, when you accuse Planned Parenthood of doing things that it was not doing, you help create a climate where these deranged people have an outlet for their derangment. And I think it does play a role. It's not the cause but it is part of the environment that helps create this thing. And I do think that all lawmakers and all politicians have a responsibility to keep the discourse civil and to keep it accurate, and that is not what has been going on with the Planned Parenthood debate in my view.