For the last week, President Trump has had Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) in his sights, absolutely blasting the controversial Democrat congresswoman.
During a recent show, Fox News’ Shepard Smith made it clear he was horrified by these events when he asked White House correspondent John Roberts, “I wonder if you’ve ever heard of a sitting president call a sitting member of Congress ‘violent,’ ‘vicious,’ and ‘out of control’?”
Grandstanding for Support
Much of Trump’s recent criticism against Tlaib comes after she was blocked from going to Israel.
After the initial denial, Israeli officials agreed to allow her in to see her grandmother, but she needed to keep her mouth shut during her stay and not criticize Israel.
When Tlaib refused, claiming the U.S. ally was being oppressive, Trump had heard about all he could take.
After seeing Tlaib turn on the waterworks during her press conference, Trump accused her of grandstanding as well as making nasty anti-Semitic comments disparaging both Jews and Israel itself.
Any Precedent for This?
When Smith heard Trump’s most recent comments about Tlaib, he was wondering if any president, or any politician for that matter, had ever talked about anyone like that before.
As it turns out, there are some precedents, but they happened quite some time ago. In 1856, Charles Sumner, an anti-slavery Republican, was caned during a session of Congress by Democrat Preston Brooks.
Senator Sumner had given a highly critical speech of slavery and had called out a relative of Brooks in the process. Rep. Brooks took exception and two days later, Brooks beat Sumner nearly to death with a cane in the Senate.
Many cite this specific incident as the root cause of the failure of level-headed discourse that caused the American Civil War.
While we doubt the feud between Trump and the members of the “Squad” will go to this extreme, the media will surely treat Trump’s words less than generously.
Donald Trump’s criticisms of Rashida Tlaib may have been harsh and unexpected, but we can’t forget that Rashida Tlaib is far from innocent in this skirmish.