Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders did the right thing on Wednesday and condemned the mass shooting by James T. Hodgkinson. The independent democratic-socialist took to the Senate floor to deliver his remarks.
Hodgkinson went to a GOP congressional baseball practice in Alexandria, Virginia on Wednesday and opened fire. He shot House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, two police officers and several aides. Fortunately, Capitol Hill police neutralized him before he could wreak more havoc (he eventually succumbed to his gunshot wounds).
After the shooter’s identity was revealed to the public, it became apparent very quickly that he despised the Republican Party. Past Facebook and Twitter activity revealed his hate for conservatives. Hodgkinson, a resident of Illinois, was also a huge supporter of Bernie Sanders – so much so, he was volunteer for his presidential campaign.
Given the embarrassing optics of this incident, Sen. Sanders made the honorable move of condemning Hodgkinson and wished the best for Rep. Steve Scalise – who remains in critical condition.
However, it should be noted this reaction is a stark contrast to what Bernie did following the mass shooting involving former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.
In 2011, deranged killer Jared Loughner went to a constituents meeting near Tucson, Arizona hosted by Giffords and opened fire. He killed numerous people in attendance and critically injured the former congresswoman. Immediately the media narrative was that Loughner was Tea Party conservative who hated Democrats (only later did it become obvious that he was apolitical and suffered from severe mental illness). Amazingly, many even tried to suggest a congressional target map made by Sarah Palin was inspiration for the shooting.
Bernie Sanders was one of those on the left who falsely promoted the narrative that Loughner’s actions were a response to conservative rhetoric. He not only pushed the absurd idea that Republicans were responsible for such hate… he actually fundraised off the tragedy. See here for the full statement he sent out in 2011 to email subscribers.
Imagine a Republican politician fundraising off the shooting on Wednesday.. just imagine it.