Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) on Monday revealed that he received a threatening voicemail days after he broke ranks, alongside 12 other Republicans, to help pass the bipartisan infrastructure bill last week.
CNN aired the threatening voicemail during an interview with Upton on Monday night, in which a caller told the GOP congressman that he is a “f**king piece of sh*t traitor.”
“I hope you die. I hope everybody in your f**king family dies,” the caller is heard saying in the voicemail.
CNN anchor Anderson Cooper said that Upton’s office indicated that the threatening voicemail was not an isolated incident. Upton said that he began receiving threats after one of his colleagues — appearing to allude to Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) — tweeted the phone numbers of the 13 House Republicans who voted for the bill.
Upton also pointed out that the voicemail CNN aired appears to be from someone who’s not his constituent, but is from South Carolina. Upton noted that Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), one of former President Trump’s top allies, was among the 19 GOP senators who voted for BIF earlier this year.
Upton then expressed concerns for his staffers who take calls that contain “very disturbing, adult language.”
“I’ll tell you it’s a terrible way — we have seen civility really downslide here,” Upton said. “I’m concerned about my staff. They are taking these calls.”
Upton’s latest remarks come days after the GOP congressman lamented the “political football” that ensued over the bipartisan infrastructure bill, with the majority of House Republicans voting against it despite claiming that they’re supportive of infrastructure legislation in the abstract.
Some House Republicans have turned against their 13 colleagues who voted for BIF, which they paint as a “pathway to socialism” now that Democrats scored a legislative victory that the Trump administration failed to do.
There are other signs of the backlash against House Republicans who backed BIF. According to Punchbowl News on Tuesday, GOP leadership is anticipating that rank-and-file lawmakers will organize an effort to strip committee assignments from members who supported BIF.