Kanjorski: 'Only fruitcakes' would take my call to shoot a governor literally 

Yesterday, Ex-Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., published a New York Times op-ed saying "it is incumbent on all Americans to create an atmosphere of civility and respect in which political discourse can flow freely, without fear of violent confrontation." I helpfully pointed out that the Congressman, who lost his seat this past November, would do well to heed his own advice given what he had said about Florida Governor Rick Scott: "Instead of running for governor of Florida, they ought to have him and shoot him. Put him against the wall and shoot him."

Now that his remarks about shooting Scott have gained widespread attention following his op-ed, Kanjorski is on the defensive:

Reached by phone Tuesday, Kanjorski said "only fruitcakes" would take his statement about Scott literally. The 73-year-old Democrat from Nanticoke, who this fall lost in his bid for a 14th term representing the 11th Congressional District, admitted he's well known for using "colorful language."

"I probably would never have made the statement if I anticipated anything like this happening," Kanjorski said. "It was obviously not in humor, but not literally."

Only fruitcakes would take violent political rhetoric seriously? Well, that's kind of the point, isn't it? Or does the logic connecting political rhetoric to acts of violence only applicable to Republicans and conservatives?

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Mark Hemingway

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