Schiff: Trump sets tone of 'division' and 'hatred'

In an interview with Jake Tapper, Congressman Adam Schiff discusses the Presidents tone after a week of violent hate

Posted: Oct 29, 2018 9:15 AM
Updated: Oct 29, 2018 9:32 AM

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy posted and later deleted a tweet last week that suggested three Jewish, billionaire Democratic donors were attempting to "buy" the 2018 midterm elections.

"We cannot allow Soros, Steyer, and Bloomberg to BUY this election! Get out and vote Republican November 6th. #MAGA," McCarthy wrote in the tweet posted Tuesday and deleted a day later, a reference to top donors to Democratic causes George Soros and Tom Steyer and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Twitter users quickly condemned McCarthy's claim, saying it was insensitive given the fact that it came just one day after authorities intercepted what appeared to be a pipe bomb sent to Soros' New York home.

On Friday, a suspicious package addressed to Steyer, a hedge fund manager who is leading a campaign to impeach President Donald Trump, was discovered in Burlingame, California, making him one of more than a dozen prominent political figures and critics of the President who were the intended recipients of suspicious packages, some carrying pipe bombs, including former President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

McCarthy's communications director, Matt Sparks, said in a statement to CNN that he also gave to The Washington Post last week that McCarthy "has and will always condemn in the strongest possible way violence or any acts of attempted violence."

"Understanding the particular sensitivity of the past 24 hours in the political climate today that has led to specific threats on both sides of the aisle, we will redouble our focus on our agenda of results," he said.

Authorities believe the packages were sent by Cesar Sayoc, a 56-year-old Florida man who was charged on Friday with five federal crimes, including illegal mailing of explosives, threats against former presidents and others, and assaulting current and former federal officers.

Soros, a billionaire investor and philanthropist, is a frequent target of right-wing criticism over his support for liberal causes, and both Steyer and Bloomberg have been politically active of late.

In response to the discovery of a suspicious package addressed to him, Steyer called for Trump's impeachment.

In a tweet, Steyer wrote: "We're thankful that everyone we work with is safe. We are seeing a systematic attack on our democracy that extends much further than just one isolated terrorist in Florida. That's why we are running an impeachment petition to end the culture of lawlessness in our country."

Steyer has financed a high-profile campaign for the President's impeachment, using a series of national ad campaigns and town halls through his "Need to Impeach" organization to push his message. He had also pledged to spend up to $120 million in the 2018 midterms.

Bloomberg, who has been flirting with a potential run for president in 2020, has been making sizable donations to Democrats in an effort to help candidates around the country.

In early October, he announced that he was donating $20 million to a PAC that aims to flip the Senate. And earlier this year, he pledged to spend $80 million on Democratic congressional candidates. Last week, he put up another $10 million for ads for Democratic candidates in a last-minute effort to support the party ahead of next week's midterm elections.

McCarthy's tweet came days before a man opened fire at a synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on Saturday, killing 11 people and injuring six others, including four police officers.

The alleged shooter, 46-year-old Robert Bowers, of Baldwin, Pennsylvania, surrendered to authorities after the Saturday morning shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue. He made anti-Semitic statements during and after the shooting, and targeted Jews on social media, according to a federal law enforcement official.

Responding to the shooting on his Twitter account Saturday afternoon, McCarthy called the attack "heinous" and said that it was "perpetrated by anti-Semitism and hate."

"May God's grace be with the victims and their families," he wrote.

Asked about McCarthy's tweet on Soros, Steyer and Bloomberg, California Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff, who is Jewish, said he wasn't sure what to make of it, but added that he thought the attacks on Soros in particular are driven by his Jewish faith.

"There are a lot of people (who) are generous to the Democratic Party," Schiff said. "The fact that he's become a symbol is not an accident. The fact that they're promulgating this falsehood that he's funding the caravan is an effort to give rebirth to this blood libel, that Jews are bringing impurity to the country, they're bringing other people to dilute the purity of the country.

"It's an ancient hatred," he continued. "And it's no accident that they have made George Soros the symbol of this. And you do see people, from the President on down, playing on this, candidates around the country playing on this."

Schiff added that anti-Semitic incidents rose sharply last year, citing figures from the Anti-Defamation League.

"(That) doesn't happen of its own. It happens because it's fed. And what will be necessary to overcome it is what the mayor was talking about," Schiff said, referring to Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto's plea for unity at a Sunday morning news conference on the mass shooting. "And that is, these are still a minority of repugnant voices, and they have to be drowned out by our common goodness."

Steyer said in an interview on the same program that he interpreted McCarthy's statement as "a straight-up anti-Semitic move. I think that that is a classic attempt to separate Americans. I think that absolutely falls into the category of what I'm describing as political violence. And I believe that what we are looking for in America is something completely different from that."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 312712

Reported Deaths: 7223
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21445257
Hinds20264414
Harrison17785308
Rankin13548278
Jackson13401246
Madison10055217
Lee9959173
Jones8361163
Forrest7638152
Lauderdale7191240
Lowndes6361144
Lamar620686
Lafayette6164118
Washington5318133
Bolivar4796132
Oktibbeha460698
Panola4550105
Pearl River4493145
Marshall4393103
Warren4371121
Pontotoc419372
Monroe4089133
Union408876
Neshoba4022176
Lincoln3944110
Hancock376886
Leflore3487125
Sunflower335590
Tate332084
Pike3290105
Scott314973
Alcorn311268
Yazoo310269
Itawamba299277
Copiah296065
Coahoma293979
Simpson293888
Tippah287468
Prentiss278960
Marion268780
Leake265573
Wayne262241
Adams261882
Grenada260085
Covington256281
George246748
Newton246161
Winston226881
Tishomingo225467
Jasper220748
Attala214173
Chickasaw206957
Holmes188672
Clay184654
Stone181833
Clarke177879
Tallahatchie177840
Calhoun169732
Yalobusha162936
Smith162134
Walthall133845
Greene130333
Lawrence128323
Montgomery126742
Noxubee126734
Perry125838
Amite122842
Carroll121728
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis106932
Tunica104626
Claiborne102230
Benton99025
Humphreys96133
Kemper95328
Franklin83423
Quitman79916
Choctaw76018
Wilkinson66830
Jefferson65428
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 529446

Reported Deaths: 10930
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson763031516
Mobile40850804
Madison34622501
Tuscaloosa25701451
Montgomery24289585
Shelby23367247
Baldwin21035307
Lee15822169
Calhoun14469313
Morgan14266279
Etowah13806352
Marshall12185222
Houston10533280
Elmore10029205
Limestone9948150
Cullman9640193
St. Clair9589239
Lauderdale9407239
DeKalb8814185
Talladega8199175
Walker7214277
Autauga6914108
Jackson6801111
Blount6635136
Colbert6288134
Coffee5498117
Dale4820111
Russell438438
Chilton4258111
Franklin424782
Covington4111117
Tallapoosa4004150
Escambia393076
Chambers3555123
Dallas3543151
Clarke350661
Marion3105100
Pike310177
Lawrence299798
Winston273672
Bibb260463
Marengo249064
Geneva247676
Pickens233659
Barbour230756
Hale222276
Butler215869
Fayette212062
Henry188744
Cherokee184145
Randolph179241
Monroe177040
Washington167039
Macon158850
Clay155156
Crenshaw151957
Cleburne148341
Lamar141534
Lowndes138553
Wilcox126729
Bullock122941
Conecuh110129
Perry107526
Coosa106928
Sumter104332
Greene92334
Choctaw60424
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