For months, House Republican Paul Gosar has been posting increasingly incoherent and disturbing tweets which frankly raised questions about his mental competence. Now his downward spiral has crossed the line into an explicitly violent tweet depicting himself murdering House Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
Gosar should be expelled for this. But that requires a two-thirds vote, and there clearly aren’t enough House Republican votes for that. Gosar should also be banned from social media, but Twitter appears unlikely to do so unless he keeps escalating. Similarly, prosecutors are unlikely to indict Gosar for this tweet alone, due to the unlikelihood of conviction, which would then just embolden him. Gosar will unfortunately have to keep escalating before facing consequences.
This is, of course, shameful. AOC shouldn’t have to be put in this unsafe position. But it is what it is, and the “good guys” can’t really do anything to remove or punish Gosar yet. That said, House Democrats are doing the one thing they can do: using Gosar’s behavior against House Republicans.
For the past 24 hours we’ve seen House Democrats from top to bottom attempting to lay Paul Gosar’s behavior at the feet of House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy, who’s too much of a coward to do anything. By highlighting McCarthy’s inaction, Democrats are going to be able to tie Gosar’s behavior to House Republicans in moderate districts, and use it to win votes and pick up seats. AOC, the victim of Gosar’s behavior, has also been quick to tie it to McCarthy.
But if liberal activists like you don’t amplify the Democrats’ messaging on this, then it doesn’t matter how solid that messaging is, because the general public won’t hear it. If you want to win, you have to be the ones to amplify it. Your most effective move is to follow House Democrats and Democratic Party leaders on Facebook or Twitter, and share their posts about Paul Gosar. Messaging only works when it’s properly amplified.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report