Culture

A GOP Congressman Gets Confrontational While Downplaying White Extremists Who Commit Terror Attacks

U.S. Congressman Sean Duffy, who represents Wisconsin and MTV’s Real World, may be auditioning to replace White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer after his inevitable final meltdown. In this bizarre CNN segment, Duffy performs all manner of back bends to justify both Trump’s Muslim ban and the White House’s claim that the press is underreporting terror attacks to suit their own immigration agenda. This clip gets incredibly messy.

The segment begins with Alisyn Camerota asking Duffy why Trump hasn’t talked about the Quebec mosque attack, in which a white, xenophobic, right-winger shot and killed Muslims during prayer service. Duffy’s on a mission against “radical Islam” and has no answer other than than to assert that there are “dozens” of ISIS-inspired attacks, as opposed to a “a one-off” like Quebec, which Camerota can’t believe she’s hearing:

Camerota: “Hold on a second, Congressman.”

Duffy: “Bring it on, Alisyn.”

Camerota: “You don’t think there are white extremists? You don’t remember Oklahoma City? You don’t think that this guy who was involved in the mosque shootings said that he was inspired by things that he read online?”

Duffy: “So … you’ve given me two examples.”

At that point, Duffy dismisses the Oklahoma City bombing as irrelevant to the discussion because it happened 20 years ago. He argues that the past ten years have presented only rare instances of white extremists committing terrorism. In doing so, he doesn’t take Aurora, Sandy Hook, or Colorado Springs into account, and when Camerota brings up how the Charleston church shooter was a white extremist, all Duffy can do is sputter, “Yeah, h-h-h-he was, okay?”

Of the Charleston massacre, Duffy then adds, “Good things came from it,” which probably was not the wisest thing to say, although he was likely only referring to Nikki Haley’s removal of the Confederate flag from the South Carolina statehouse.

Camerota then asks, “Why do you think that when it’s a white terrorist, it’s an isolated incident?” In response, Duffy asserts that there’s no “heartbeat” or driving “cell” that can compare to the destruction wrought by ISIS. Several other outlandish statements spill from his mouth, including his erroneous description of Gabby Giffords (“the Marxist took her life”). And finally, Duffy becomes so unable to cope with Camerota’s persistence that he declares there’s no way to properly vet white terrorists: “What do we do???”

It sure sounds like Duffy is saying it’s impossible to vet white supremacists by looking at them, but it’s fine to extremely vet Muslim refugees.

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