With an undying penchant for putting his foot in his mouth, Vice President Joe Biden did not disappoint during a Minnesota fundraiser for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mark Dayton this week when he told the 350 attendants that he would “strangle” any Republican who complained about the federal budget.
“If I hear one more Republican tell me about balancing the budget, I am going to strangle them,” he said.
Republican Party of Minnesota Chairman Tony Sutton subsequently called on Dayton to denounce the comments.
“Joe Biden’s deeply divisive comments have no place in our state’s public discourse and Mark Dayton must denounce them,” he wrote in a release. “As Biden’s host today, Dayton surely understands that jokes about physical violence are never acceptable. Minnesotans deserve better.”
Dayton has yet to comply and the national media has shied away from criticism of Biden’s remarks as well, despite the fact that many analysts and pundits have harshly criticized conservative rhetoric and suggested that it could be responsible for stirring violence. The most notable figures to be on the opposite side of these harangues are Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, and Rush Limbaugh, none of whom occupy any position of governmental power.
For example, this summer, Chris Matthews featured a “documentary” on MSNBC, “The Rise of the New Right,” which attempted to tie conservative commentary to future acts of violence.
“This April was the 15th anniversary of Oklahoma City. It is well to consider what happens when people act on what they hear, when the hatred of our own elected government becomes explosive,” Matthews concluded at the end of his feature.
To date, none of Matthews’ estimated annual spittle precipitation rate has been spent expressing outrage over Biden’s “strangle” comment.
One of the more recent allegation of right-wing commentary inducing violence comes from Washington Post op-ed columnist Richard Cohen, who this week wrote that conservative words were similar to those that inspired the Kent State Massacre.
He too has been absent in commenting on Biden’s violent threat.
Tim Graham, director of media analysis at the Media Research Center, told The Daily Caller that many in the media just look at Biden as a gaffe machine and therefore not worth dwelling on. He noted, however, that there is definitely a double standard for conservatives.
“To me it seems like an intimidation tactic, you know, you better stay quiet or somebody is going to get shot. That is sort of the theme,” he said.
Neither Chris Matthews nor Cohen immediately responded to The Daily Caller’s inquiries.