“Sunday Night in America” host Trey Gaudi condemned House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s attack on her husband, Paul Pelosi, and called for greater efforts to defend her subsequent political opponents.
On Friday, San Francisco police reported that Pelosi’s husband was attacked by David DePape, 42, at the couple’s home in California. and hit her husband with a hammer.
Gaudi condemned the attack, but said how it represented a more violent shift in recent Republican and Democratic politics.
“It’s become a recurring theme in American politics. Political violence and threats of violence are on the rise,” he said. “Elected officials were shot at community rallies and at charity ballparks; children and spouses of federal judges were shot in their homes; Supreme Court judges were targeted for assassination; Hang the president!” he cried. Attacks in restaurants, work lobbies, and now his family at home.
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“For the overwhelming majority of us, the only weapons we use in political discourse are power of persuasion and the right to vote. They would believe that violence is justified,” Gaudí said.
Several politicians on both sides of the aisle then condemned the attack and called for political violence. However, some Democrats have accused Republican rhetoric of inspiring the act.
By contrast, Gowdy called for more action to defend his political opponents.
“And perhaps we should say less crazy things while we know crazy people are listening. It doesn’t take political courage to defend a friend. The question is, It’s whether we have the political courage to defend and physically defend those with whom we disagree.
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He also used John Adams, the second president of the United States, as an example of defending a political opponent at the risk of political insult.
“Before we were a country, a Massachusetts lawyer agreed to defend a British soldier charged with the murder of an American. I told him it would hurt his career, hurt his legal practice, hurt his standing in the community, but this lawyer did it anyway. I would rather endure the insults of all mankind than see an innocent person convicted or an innocent life taken.
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He concluded: Will our perceived political opponents be hammered, shot, beaten?”