Hark! Fresh gaslighting and deflection on this week’s menu.
On Saturday, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) attended an anti-police brutality protest in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota against the killing of Daunte Wright by a police officer last week amid the murder trial of ex-cop Derek Chauvin in Minneapolis.
“We’ve got to stay on the street and we’ve got to get more active, we’ve got to get more confrontational,” Waters told reporters. “We’ve got to make sure that they know that we mean business.”
Republicans, thirsty for an opportunity to both distract from their role in inciting a full-blown insurrection in January and to smear Black Lives Matter as a violent movement, pounced immediately.
On Sunday night, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) accused Waters of “inciting violence in Minneapolis” and demanded that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) punish the Democrat.
“If Speaker Pelosi doesn’t act against this dangerous rhetoric, I will bring action this week,” the GOP leader tweeted.
“Rep. Waters has incited violence for the past two years. Enough is enough,” tweeted Cawthorne, who has been accused of sexual harassment and intimidation by multiple women at his old college.
And Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), now left with plenty of time on her hands after being stripped of her committee assignments due to her violent rhetoric online and canceling her flatly racist “America First” caucus, has thrown herself into the outrage and vowed to introduce a resolution to have Waters (referred to by Greene as “this criminal”) expelled.
Waters dismissed the ruckus on Monday, telling the Grio that she’s “not worried that they’re going to continue to distort what I say.”
TPM has reached out to Pelosi’s office.
Needless to say, any push to censor or expel Waters over her comment will go nowhere in the Democrat-controlled House, but that isn’t the point.
This theater is part of the GOP’s sustained effort to flip the narrative on Democrats ever since President Donald Trump’s supporters ransacked the Capitol on January 6. Virtually all Republicans, including McCarthy, helped Trump fuel the rage that led to the attack with lies claiming that the 2020 election was fraudulent. Then almost none of them voted to impeach Trump for encouraging his supporters to storm the building.
Since then, GOP lawmakers have steadfastly refused to acknowledge their role in the attack and are using false equivalencies to paint the other side as the real enemies of peace and democracy. McCarthy and his conference whipped out the same playbook in the contested race in Iowa’s second district earlier this year, accusing the Democrats of trying to steal the election as Rita Hart, the Democratic candidate in the race who lost by six votes, contested the results.
Hart ultimately abandoned her challenge, citing Republicans’ “toxic campaign of political disinformation.”