The Florida GOP candidate whose fundraising email said that Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) should be hanged isn’t apologizing for his attacks against the Muslim congresswoman.
On Wednesday, the Tampa Bay Times reported that George Buck, who was in the running to unseat Rep. Charlie Crist (D-FL), pushed a baseless conspiracy theory in the email sent last month that accused Omar of secretly working on behalf of the Qatari government.
The Times reported that Buck wrote in the email — which also reportedly mentioned House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), and Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) — that “we should hang these traitors where they stand.”
Since the Times’ report was published Wednesday morning, Buck’s campaign Facebook page has posted five links to news articles that take aim at Omar. On Thursday morning, Buck posted a link to Omar saying that she and “every single Muslim in this country should be tired” of “the discomfort of being a second class citizen. Buck’s latest post aimed at Omar comes the day after he accused “fake RINOs [Republicans In Name Only]” of attacking him for a “fake headline issued by the Tampa Bay Times.”
National Republican Congressional Committee confirmed to TPM on Wednesday that Buck had been removed from a “Young Guns” program with the GOP group.
“[House Minority Leader Kevin] McCarthy made the decision to remove him and Chairman [Tom] Emmer agrees,” NRCC National Press Secretary Michael McAdams told TPM.
When pressed for comment Wednesday, Buck failed to directly address the NRCC’s decision in an email to CNN. Buck told CNN that he is “a decorated veteran of the 101st Airborne Division” who has taken the oath to defend the Constitution “very seriously.”
CNN added that Buck’s email also outlined the Constitution’s reference to treason and Congress’ power to enforce punishment: “Anyone who commits treason against the United States should be tried to the full extent of the law.”
In response to Buck’s threat aimed at Omar, Crist told CNN in a Wednesday statement that he is “alarmed and disappointed by the threatening language being used against me and my colleagues.”
“It’s not reflective of the kindness and decency of our district, state, or country. It’s yet another reminder how important it is to restore civility to our politics,” Crist said in the statement obtained by CNN, which also urged lawmakers to adhere to a “Commitment to Civility.”