Rep. Maxine Waters has never been shy about sharing her contempt for former President Donald Trump, and the feeling was mutual.
Along those lines, the California Democrat was on MSNBC on Sunday, unloading on Trump and about how impeachment for the second time was as much a slam dunk as it was necessary. But in the course of that rant, Waters tried to rewrite her own sordid history in helping make our country a more polarized, less civilized place.
In June 2018, Waters got on her soapbox at a rally of constituents to denounce Trump’s immigration policy and, more specifically, the building of a wall along the Mexican border and the separation from minors from adults.
She talked about getting “our children” back, and argued people must stand up to the president and his administration. And she called for Trump’s impeachment even then.
“History is not going to be kind to this administration. But we want history to record that we stood up, that we pushed back. That we fought, that we did not consider ourselves victims of this president,” Waters thundered that day, according to a clip of the event posted on Fox News.
“History will record that while he tries to step on all of us, we kicked him in his rear and that we stepped on him,” Waters added.
“The message has to be: Mr. President, we’re not afraid of you,” she continued. “You have members of your cabinet that have been booed out of restaurants, who have protesters taking up at their house, who say no peace, no sleep. … Let’s make sure we show up wherever we have to show up. And if you see anybody from that cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd. And you push back on them. And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.”
On Sunday, MSNBC host Ali Velshi asked Waters about the last part of that rant, and she adamantly denied that she meant what she said.
“Nothing that any Democrat that I know of ever said anything or acted in that way that the president of the United States has acted. … This president was out to destroy our democracy, if he could not be president,” Waters said. As to her comments from 2018, she added, “That does not in any way equal what this president has said and what he has done.”
When Velshi again asked if she could deny that “glorified or encouraged” violence against Republicans, Water replied, “Absolutely I can say that. As a matter of fact, if you look at the words that I used, the strongest thing I said was tell them they’re not welcome. Talk to them. Tell them they’re not welcome. I didn’t say go and fight. I didn’t say anybody was going to have any violence. And so they can’t make that stick.”
The problem for Waters is that her defense is destroyed by her fellow Democrats.
“If you see anybody from the Cuomo Administration in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd. And you push back on them. And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.” -Maxine CuomoWatch@melissadderosa pic.twitter.com/VbeTf7Rl7R
— Cuomo Watch (@CuomoWatch) January 28, 2021
Last month the Twitter account @CuomoWatch posted Waters’s quote about confronting Trump officials in public places, but substituted the word “the Cuomo administration” for “that cabinet.”
And Democrats in New York lined up to denounce the calls for violence against public officials. Here are some examples from state lawmakers:
What’s wrong with you? Threatening violence against duly elected representatives of the people of New York is fascism.
The hatred unleashed by Trump and his gang of thugs continues to reverberate throughout the country. Enough is enough.
— Jeffrey Dinowitz (@JeffreyDinowitz) January 29, 2021
This is dangerous, reprehensible and has no place in any public discussion. Oh, and spare me the “someone else did it too” excuse. Someone else saying a variation of this doesn’t change the fact that this is seeking to incite violence against a public official and their staff.
— Ken Zebrowski (@kenzebrowski_ny) January 29, 2021
We need to stop this behavior towards elected officials and especially their staff. The seige of the Capitol empowered behavior like this and must be stopped at any moment it creeps its head out in any fashion.
— Kenny Burgos (@KennyBurgosNY) January 29, 2021
This kind of incitement to violence against government leaders must stop. Especially after the recent seige at the U.S. Capitol, we must condemn these types of threats. They endanger our democracy. This is not who we are and we can do better.
— Jenifer Rajkumar (@JeniferRajkumar) January 29, 2021
Let’s be careful. While many may be feeling angry and frustrated towards government at times, aggression and threats like this are not the answer.
— SenatorJoeAddabbo (@SenJoeAddabbo) January 29, 2021
Perhaps Trump should call them as witnesses to testify about how threatening such rhetoric can be.
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