- The Washington Times - Friday, June 16, 2017

A New Jersey Democratic strategist has refused to apologize for tweeting #HuntRepublicans and #HuntRepublicanCongressmen in the aftermath of Wednesday’s assassination attempt of Republican members of Congress.

According to MyCentralJersey.com, Jim Devine has been involved in politics for 35 years and previously worked on campaigns for New Jersey Assemblyman James Kennedy and state Sen. Raymond Lesniak.

Just hours after a leftist gunman opened fire at a congressional baseball practice Wednesday morning in Alexandria, Virginia, wounding House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, a congressional staffer, a lobbyist, and two Capitol police officers, Mr. Devine took to Twitter to smear the Republican congressman.

“In 2002, Scalise was a speaker at the European-American Unity & Rights Organization (EURO), a group founded by David Duke. #HuntRepublicans,” Mr. Devine wrote, repeating a refuted claim.

“We are in a war with selfish, foolish & narcissistic rich people. Why is it a shock when things turn violent?#HuntRepublicanCongressmen,” he wrote.

“I am sorry if my #HuntRepublicanCongressmen hashtag hurt the feelings of any GOP snowflakes but you have not engaged in civil discourse,” he added Thursday.

The tweets remained active on his account as of Friday morning.

“I think it speaks for itself,” Mr. Devine told the Asbury Park Press in an interview Thursday. “Yesterday’s events are the result of escalating rhetoric and vitriol that has been evident in our political system culminating with the election of our president and the chickens came home to roost, you know?”

“If you want to behave in an uncivilized and violent manner, which I do not condone, but if you want to operate under those circumstances,” he said, “then you have to be prepared to accept those consequences.”

Mr. Devine said President Trump incited violence during his 2016 campaign.

“I think it’s horrible, but I think it was extremely predictable, and I think it was entirely preventable,” he said of the shooting, MyCentralJersey.com reported.

A spokesman for New Jersey Democratic State Committee Chairman John Currie said the organization “is in no way associated with Mr. Devine’s hashtag.”

“We reject incitements to violence and deplore such sensationalism,” spokesman Matt Farrauto said.

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