Finally, a Republican as unabashed as President Trump.
Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-N.Y.) had a fierce exchange with a reporter at a campaign event for her reelection bid on Monday, slamming the media for laying the blame for mass shootings on Republicans and proclaiming “it’s fake news!”
The reporter confronted Tenney about a comments she made last month in response to a radio interviewer who claimed demographics and race play a role in mass shootings and claimed protected areas “tend to be Republican” and “white.”
“Obviously there’s a lot of politics in it,” Tenney said at the time. “And it’s interesting that so many of these people that commit the mass murders end up being Democrats. But the media doesn’t talk about that either.”
Tenney became the target of endless social media attacks and endured plenty of scorn from the mainstream media as well. By Monday, she was done.
When pressed yet again about the remark, Tenney spoke out against the “vicious, vicious rhetoric coming out of the #Resist movement every single day.”
“We took a commitment to civility. I implore everyone, turn on CNN. Turn on the news media on the left and watch everyday, the constant dumping of blame to Republicans. The hysteria over President Trump. The constant Russia collusion story, which is now turning out to be a farce.”
The lawmaker explained that her comment had been a reaction to the media’s portrayal of Republicans as villainous, and that she believes mass shootings occur “across all sectors with all kinds of people.”
“It isn’t just Republicans who commit all these terrible crimes,” she continued.
“It is across all sectors and it is people who are typically mentally unstable that are committing a lot of the crimes that we’re seeing, and the abhorrent behavior of the media in promoting, and the rhetoric coming from the Democrats who started this, who exploit the terrible tragedies that are occurring in our communities.
“They exploit these things the minute they come out, they attack legal gun owners, they attack legal citizens.”
At one point, Tenney said “everybody is guilty equally.” When the reporter continued asserting she hadn’t answered his question, the congresswoman leaned into the microphone and shouted “its fake news!”
She then added “I answered your question every which way, its fake news!” before walking away.
“Bye. Done. It’s ridiculous,” Tenney closed as she tore off her microphone.