As Sen. Kamala Harris and billionaire philanthropist Tom Steyer have emerged today as two of the latest targets in a string of bombs sent to prominent Democrats and Trump critics, U.S. Rep. Jared Huffman called in from the road to express his outrage and disgust at the disturbing week of domestic terrorism. "Several people I know and consider friends" have been targeted, says Huffman, citing Harris and Steyer as he called upon Donald Trump to "basically shut up. He is not a credible messenger when it come to de-escalating this political wildfire. He needs to just tone everything down while others try to set another tone."
Huffman's not convinced that others in the GOP will stand up and denounce the attacks as he accused members of the Republican Party of playing Trump's game and deflecting blame to the media. "I wish I was hearing from a whole bunch of Republicans in a candid and fulsome way." he says, "but unfortunately, too many of them are following Trump's lead on this and suggesting that the media had a role."
Yesterday the reality-show president tweeted that if it weren't for the media—the enemy of the people, as he's said before—maybe his supporters wouldn't be so angry that they'd be driven to try and murder public officials that Trump himself has vilified using extremist rhetoric. "A very big part of the Anger we see today in our society is caused by the purposely false and inaccurate reporting of the Mainstream Media that I refer to as Fake News. It has gotten so bad and hateful that it is beyond description. Mainstream Media must clean up its act, FAST!"
Steyer, the San Francisco hedge-fund billionaire, has been an out-front proponent of impeaching President Donald Trump. He was identified this afternoon, Huffman says, as another target of the Florida individual, Cesar Stoyoc, who was arrested earlier today in connection with the string of pipe bombs, whose other targets included Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, James Clapper, Barack Obama, John Brennan, Maxine Waters, Eric Holder and others. Huffman says he that he was "sort of waiting" for Steyer to be targeted and wasn't surprised to hear on the radio today that he's another apparent target of the pro-Trump bomber.
"There is a straight line from this deranged bomber to President Donald Trump," says Huffman—who has supported articles of impeachment against the reality-show president, "and there is no way you can separate the bombs from the bombast."
Huffman also pushed back against any argument equating the series of bombings with the shooting last year of Louisiana Republican Congressman Steve Scalise.
"It's preposterous to attempt at any moral equivalency," he says, noting that no-one—not Bernie Sanders, not Maxine Waters, not Eric Holder, has called for violence against their political opponents. Holder recently quipped at an event, "When they go low, we kick them," and immediately noted that he was joking and that his comment was intended as metaphor. Waters has called for verbal confrontations of Republican enablers of Trump, and while Huffman says he "disagrees with some of the tactics—there is a massive quantum difference and to try and conflate these things is dishonest and dangerous."