After surviving near-fatal injuries in a politically-motivated ambush on Republican members of a congressional baseball team during a practice session in June 2017, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise doesn’t take any threat lightly.
A man was arrested in New York on Thursday for leaving a threatening voicemail for Scalise and one other Republican representative who has been identified only as a member of Congress from Washington state.
The suspect, 63-year-old Carlos Bayon, who reportedly lives in Grand Island, NY, has been charged with making threats across state lines.
Eye for an Eye
Bayon’s threatening messages, which were sent on June 30, appeared to be in reference to the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance immigration policy, which resulted in the temporary separation of illegal immigrant parents from their children.
Bayon seemed to be upset about the family separation — and he directed that anger toward a few Republican members of Congress.
“Hey listen, this message is for you and the people that sent you there,” Bayon’s message to Scalise began. “You are taking ours, we are taking yours. Anytime, anywhere. We know where they are.”
Bayon went on to say: “We are not going to feed them sandwiches, we are going to feed them lead. Make no mistake, you will pay. Ojo por ojo, diente por diente [“an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth”]. That is our law and we are the majority.”
He closed his voicemail with a cold, “Have a good day.”
Grateful to Law Enforcement
An investigation traced the call back to Bayon in New York, where he was officially charged with the interstate communication of a threat.
Following Bayon’s arrest, Rep. Scalise released a statement thanking law enforcement for keeping him and his colleagues safe from harm.
“Whip Scalise is grateful to law enforcement for their actions. He will never forget how their heroism saved his life and those of his colleagues last year,” Scalise’s spokeswoman Lauren Fine said. “As he has said before, there is absolutely no place in our political discourse for violent threats.”
If convicted, Bayon could face up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.