Democratic consultant unapologetic for ‘hunt Republican’ posts
A Democratic consultant from Union County says that he refuses to apologize for Twitter posts he made with the hashtags #HuntRepublicans and #HuntRepublicanCongressman.
“Sometimes you have to push them back,” says Jim Devine, a Democratic strategist from Rahway.
But sometimes the pushback turns into violence, according to top leaders in the New Jersey State House.
“The people who are serious threats, it’s unlikely they’re going to give you a heads up,” says Assembly Republican Leader Jon Bramnick.
Politicians say that they are particularly concerned after House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and three others were shot at a GOP baseball practice in Alexandria, Virginia earlier this week. The shooter was supposedly targeting Republican politicians.
Devine made the Twitter posts announcing it hunting season on Republicans just hours after Wednesday’s shooting.
“I didn’t throw the first punch,” he says. “This has been around for 40 years.”
Devine says, “Sometimes you have to push them back and you know what? A lot of these shrinking violets, these Republican snowflakes who got their feeling hurt by my hashtag, I have no sympathy for them.”
In the tweets, Devine said, “We are in a war with selfish, foolish & narcissistic rich people. Why is it a shock when things turn violent?”
But Devine says that he is not trying to incite violence.
“It didn’t say ‘shoot Republicans,’ it said ‘hunt Republicans’ and we do in America with ballots what they do in other countries with bullets,” he says.
Bramnick says that Devine should stop because he’s going to cause more violence.
“It’s to me, an insult to democracy,” Bramnick says.
Devine is a consultant who has worked with several Democratic campaigns in the state over the past two decades. He says that he does believe that the shooting is a tragedy and he doesn't want his tweets to inspire violence.