[guest post by Dana]
A few days ago, I posted about Georgia’s Secretary of State George Raffensperger and the death threats he and his wife are receiving as a result of having certified the election for President-elect Joe Biden. Yesterday, Gabriel Sterling, the voting implementation manager with the Georgia Secretary of State’s office, publicly expressed his dismay over the post-election behavior and pleaded to the President to make a public stand against said threats. Because now it’s not just the Georgia Secretary of State and his family being threatened:
“It’s all gone too far,” he said with a raised voice to start the event. “All of it.”
It comes after a 20-year-old contractor for Dominion received death threats, Sterling said. He said the worker received threats with a noose on social media — saying he should be hanged for treason. He said the tech was transporting a report for batches in Gwinnett County.
“He was just trying to do his job,” Sterling said. “It’s not right.”
Sterling also mentioned Joe diGenova, the attorney for President Donald Trump’s campaign, calling for violence against Chris Krebs, a former White House cybersecurity official.
“He should be drawn and quartered. Taken out at dawn and shot,” diGenova said during The Howie Carr Show. He later said he was joking.
Sterling called on everyone, including the President and the GOP senators to condemn this type of action.
“Mr. President, you have not condemned these actions or this language. Senators, you have not condemned this language or these actions. This has to stop! We need you to step up and if you’re going to take a position of leadership – show some.”
Sterling also made a direct plea to President Trump:
“Mr. President. It looks like you likely lost the state of Georgia. We’re investigating. There’s always a possibility. I get it. And you have the rights to go through the course. What you don’t have the ability to do — and you need to step up and say this — is stop inspiring people to commit potential acts of violence. Someone is going to get hurt. Someone is going to get shot. Someone’s going to get killed. And it’s not right. It’s not right.”
“Mr. President, as the secretary said yesterday, people aren’t giving you the best advice what’s actually going on on the ground. It’s time to look forward. If you want to run for re-election in four years, fine, do it. But everything we’re seeing right now, there’s not a path. Be the bigger man here. And stop. Step in. Tell your supporters: don’t be violent. Don’t intimidate. All that’s wrong. It’s un-American.”
Appealing to Donald Trump for leadership and to be the bigger man is, unfortunately, laughable. Especially when he has a bruised ego to nurse. And while he acts out in cunning anger, he simultaneously stokes the fires of his loyal base. This is not unintentional. It is unfortunate that they are so willing to follow his lead, and like sheep, have gone astray from normal and rational behavior. Death threats are never, ever acceptable. And the President of the United States and Republican lawmakers should never, ever have to be pleaded with to publicly condemn them. The outrageous inaction by elected leaders when challenged to do the morally right thing is so beyond the pale that I suspect it will be long be seen as a stain of shame on the Republican party. Deservedly so.
Georgia Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler only addressed the threats of violence after being directly questioned by reporters:
“Senator Perdue condemns violence of any kind, against anybody. Period. We won’t apologize for addressing the obvious issues with the way our state conducts its elections. Georgians deserve accountability and improvements to that process — and we’re fighting to make sure the January 5th election is safe, secure, transparent, and accurate.” – John Burke, Communications Director
“Like many officials, as someone who has been the subject of threats, of course Senator Loeffler condemns violence of any kind. How ridiculous to even suggest otherwise. We also condemn inaction and lack of accountability in our election system process—and won’t apologize for calling it out. Senator Loeffler will continue fighting to ensure we have a fair, trusted, and accurate election because the future of our country is at stake.” – Stephen Lawson, Campaign Spokesperson
Here is President Trump’s reaction to Sterling’s plea:
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 2, 2020
Note: a spokesperson from the Trump campaign said “no one should engage in threats or violence, and if that has happened, we condemn that fully.”