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- A GUN AND A FLAG: Not Chris Nogy.
First it was Republican Rep. Nate Bell, with his non-apology apology for slurring Bostonians while trying to score a pro-gun political point in the midst of a manhunt for police killers noticeably undeterred by firepower.
When the world blew back on Bell, he did NOT apologize for his remark, only for its “timing.”
Now comes Chris Nogy, an extremist Republican from Benton County (redundant, I know), whom I wrote about last night. He’s the one who put a letter in the Benton County Republican newsletter in which he said, among other threatening remarks about Republican legislators who’d voted to implement Obamacare in Arkansas:
The 2nd amendment means nothing unless those in power believe you would have no problem simply walking up and shooting them if they got too far out of line and stopped responding as representatives.
He added, at one point, a Nixonian, “but hey we can’t.” Hard to shake the feeling he said that very regretfully.
Anyway, Larry Henry at 5 News in NWA adds more to the Nogy saga today:
Like Bell, a writer to the 5 news website, identifying himself as Nogy has issued further remarks that are well short of repentant for the initial comments.
In the “clarification” published in the comments section, the person identifying himself as Nogy says he “didn’t advocate violence” and “most likely won’t try to kill them or harm their families.”
“I mentioned violence to get people’s attention, and it worked,” he writes.
“most likely” ? Using threat of violence to get attention is a valid political tactic?
Official Republican response has been timid and wholly unsatisfactory. Rep. Charlie Collins even responded initially by saying that, while he disagreed with what Nogy said, he defended his right to say it.
This isn’t on-the-one-hand/on-the-other-hand kind of rhetoric. It’s just wrong. Nothing but definitive repudiation is in order.
Collins should have said: “I abhor what this person said and want no one like him as part of my Republican Party.”
Don’t hold your breath. The Republican Party of Arkansas was similarly wishy-washy about several extremist legislative candidates. Remember the Three Stooges — Hubbard, Fuqua and Mauch?
Tim Summers, the former legislator who chairs the Benton County committee, said it did not “approve” the letter and that it would be discussed at a future meeting. Does he really have to have a meeting before disavowing this diatribe?
The party’s avoidance of strong criticism tells you everything you need to know about how important top Republicans think extremists are to their base of support.