Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) says that Donald Trump’s use of far-right supporters to scare Democrats and Republicans who don’t agree with him is like what Solomon Pena did. He is a Republican who plans to run for the New Mexico state House in 2022 and was responsible for the shootings of the six Democratic lawmakers.
Raskin told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow on Monday that the Jan. 6 committee had issued a warning that if nothing was done, this kind of “destructive extremism” would continue to be “embraced as part of the political system.”
“We know that Donald Trump used dangerous extremists for his own purposes on Jan. 6th., but they have used him as well and have been brought into the political system,” said Raskin. “And now we’re ending up with people like George Santos or Lauren Boebert or Solomon Pena in New Mexico as actual Republican nominees for Congress. I mean, it’s an extraordinary thing. So, if you have a policy of no enemies on the right, you are going to get people entering into public office and entering into political campaigns who behave in such ways.”
Pena declared himself the MAGA king on his Twitter account and was one of the attackers on January 6.
“When you say no enemies on the right, do you mean that’s the internal dynamic within Republican circles as pertains to extremism?” Maddow asked.
Raskin concurred, stating that it seemed to be Donald Trump’s demeanor.
“Essentially, if you were willing to support Trump, it didn’t make any difference if you were a Holocaust revisionist, if you were marching in Charlottesville, if you were a liar, a cheat, a swindler, what have you,” he explained. “And when Kevin McCarthy decided to embrace Trumpism, he by definition, embraced that credo too. The chickens are coming home to roost with people like George Santos and Lauren Boebert and this guy in New Mexico. I mean a political party has got to be big and a big tent, but it really can’t stand for dangerous extremists and criminals and other elements like that, that will use electoral politics for their own purposes, whether they’re financial, ideological, or political in an extremist sense.”
The Justice Department, FBI, and Homeland Security are being investigated by the new Republican Congress for allegedly weaponizing the federal government, according to Maddow. She questioned Raskin if this was really just an effort by the GOP to intimidate the FBI and the DOJ.
“Well, that’s one of the central purposes of it. You know, you have a lot of people who were involved at different levels in the Jan. 6th attempted political coup against the vice president, against Congress, and the insurrection which stormed the Capitol,” said Raskin. “A lot of those people are involved, which is why we are calling the new committee the Select Committee on Insurrection Protection because a lot of these people are in it to try to make sure they don’t get investigated and they don’t get prosecuted.”
He said it was more significant than the investigation from January 6 and that the GOP was trying to prevent “there’s no neutral, objective law enforcement that comes to their door for any crimes that may have been committed.”