Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) appears fed up with lies from his Republican colleagues about the integrity of last year’s presidential election. This week, he publicly spoke out against Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.) after the first-term Congressman claimed at a county GOP gathering that “if our election systems continue to be rigged,” then “bloodshed” will ensue. The idea that the “election systems” in the United States are “rigged” is absolutely nonsensical, and for Cawthorn to claim otherwise as an elected member of the United States Congress is nothing short of embarrassing. Cawthorn and those who push similar ideas don’t know what they’re talking about and have opted to live in what amounts to a fantasy world instead of reality.
Responding to a recap of Cawthorn’s comments, Kinzinger commented as follows:
‘This is insane. Based on a total lie. This must stop.’
This is insane. Based on a total lie. This must stop https://t.co/fmc0WIFY5h
— Adam Kinzinger (@AdamKinzinger) August 31, 2021
Sure, Cawthorn included some caveats. He said, for instance, that there’s nothing that he would “dread doing more than having to pick up arms against a fellow American.” (Individuals who’d no doubt be supporters of his seemed perfectly fine with wielding weapons against fellow Americans at the Capitol in January.) Cawthorn also said that those concerned about the imaginary issue of threats to election integrity “can have recourse against” the possibility of perpetrating violence against fellow Americans “if we all passionately demand that we have election security in all 50 states.” In other words, he seemed to be saying that this supposed specter of violence could be avoided if supposed election integrity problems are fixed now. None of these comments change the basic reality that Cawthorn essentially seemed to indicate that he would understand perpetrating deadly violence against fellow Americans over issues related to election integrity.
At one point are reckless imbeciles like Cawthorn going to be held accountable for inciting violence? It’s as though he was winking at would-be assailants, implicitly telling them that even if he would shy away from joining their struggle, he gets it. No! According to any basic understanding of the functioning of democracy, no elected official in the United States Congress or anywhere else in government should be saying any such thing. Cawthorn’s rhetoric undercuts the basic level of societal cohesion upon which democracy operates.