Tea Party Leader Intimidates Congressman, His Brother, Kids
March 23, 2010
(ChattahBox)—-After the House Democrats under Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), made history Sunday night and passed healthcare reform, Republicans and tea party groups became enraged and let loose with hysterical rhetoric. But a leader of the Lynchburg Tea Party in Virginia went too far, by inciting violence and harassment against an elected official in his district who voted yes for the bill. The teapartier published the home address of Rep. Thomas Perriello (D-VA) on his blog, encouraging enraged teapartiers to visit the lawmaker’s home for a “personal” and ” face-to-face chat.” But the teapartier in question, Mike Troxel published instead, the home address of Rep. Perriello’s brother, who has four children under the age of eight. When contacted by Politico, Troxel was defiant, saying he planned to keep the brother’s address on his blog, until Congressman Perriello provided him with his own home address.
Troxel’s Virginia 6th blog published Perriello’s brother’s address, with a thinly veiled call to action to his fellow teapartiers to engage in intimidation, harassment and possible violent acts:
“Just in case any of his friends and neighbors want to drop by and say hi and express their thanks regarding his vote for health care,” Troxel writes. “I personally believe it’s so important for representatives to remain fully grounded and to remember exactly what it is their constituents are saying and how they are telling them to vote. Nothing quite does that like a good face-to-face chat. It has a much more personal touch to it.”
“If they would like to provide me with the address of Tom, then I’d be more than happy to take it down,” he said. “I have no reason to believe it’s not his house.”
“We’re pretty ticked off he voted for it [healthcare bill],” Troxel said.
Troxel said he found the address on a directory website and he has faith in his investigative techniques, because he is a 2005 journalism graduate of Jerry Falwell’s Baptist Liberty University. “I was a journalism major in college, so I have every reason to believe my research is accurate,” Troxel told Politico.
Although the Lynchburg teapartier at first refused to remove the address from his Web site, it has apparently been removed. His site is currently down to increased traffic and the bandwidth limits have been exceeded.
Over the weekend, outside lamps were stolen from Perriello’s brother’s home. And according to Politico: “An aide for the congressman posted a comment to the blog asking that the address be removed. The comment has been taken down with no correction to the post or any explanation. Troxel said he never saw the comment.”
The main site of the Lynchburg Tea Party has an announcement on its home page, saying Troxel’s post was not “requested, sanctioned or endorsed” by the group. But the group does not condemn Troxel’s actions. Troxel is listed on the Lynchburg Tea Party site, under the section “Leadership team, as the Committee Chair for Media.
This is not the first time local tea party groups have targeted Rep. Perriello with violence. The Danville Tea Party planned to burn the lawmaker in effigy last fall, along with the “treasonous witch” Nancy Pelosi. The teapartiers were angry that Perriello voted for the original House version of healthcare reform and referred to the moderate Congressman as a “turn coat traitor.”
Danville tea Party Chairman Nigel Coleman, led unruly members from his group to visit Perriello’s Capitol Hill office, during a tea party gathering organized by Rep. Michele Bachmann (D-MN) and the group spent most of the visit shouting over Perriello, as he tried to answer their questions about healthcare reform.
After receiving negative media attention for the group’s bonfire and effigy burnings, Nigel Coleman canceled plans to set images of Perriello and Pelosi aflame, blaming the flap on liberal blogs.