On December 21st, a man named Thomas Alexander Starks was accused of smashing windows and the intercom system in Republican Senator John Hoeven’s office with an ax. This is a felony with a potential five-year sentence.
Obviously, if you watch the video allegedly showing Starks carrying out the crime, there’s no justification presented or mitigating factors. It’s just a goon walking up to a Senator’s office, smashing things with an ax, and then leaving. Unsurprisingly, a GoFundMe was set up to support this guy’s defense for the crime. What was surprising was that prominent Democrats in North Dakota contributed to it. The North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party Chairwoman Kylie Overson, 2012 lieutenant gubernatorial contender Ellen Chaffee and party official Ellie Shockley all chipped in money to this GoFundMe.
Here’s the statement from the North Dakota GOP about that,
“It is inexcusable that Chairwoman Overson would be personally involved in supporting a far-left extremist whose violent actions constitute an assault on our democracy. Video evidence leaves little in doubt about this attack, so it is unfathomable why ND Dem-NPL officials would lend their name and financial support to a man they refer to as ‘innocent.’ I want to thank our brave men and women of the Fargo Police Department for their diligent pursuit of justice in this matter, as well as Senator Hoeven for being an excellent public servant for all North Dakotans. We will not be intimidated by violence and extremism – even when it is explicitly and sadly endorsed by our opposition.”
Overson released a statement saying,
“I firmly believe that everyone, no matter their socioeconomic status, deserves a full and rigorous defense when accused of a crime. I plainly and resolutely condemn violence, including against elected officials and public property. My donation does not reflect my views on the incident.”
Of course, this is complete nonsense because there are enormous numbers of people accused of committing crimes and she chose to fund this guy’s defense. She can claim that she doesn’t support what he did, but obviously, she does or she wouldn’t be trying to get him off the hook.
It’s funny. The rioters in the Capitol Building have been nearly universally condemned for what they did, but many of them did less than this guy. What’s worse? Stealing a podium, taking a goofy picture in a Congressman’s office, or smashing up an office with an ax? That’s not excusing what the rioters at the Capitol Building did, but it is pointing out that Democrats have been doing the same kind of things for the last year and justifying it. Because of that, they do genuinely deserve some of the blame for what happened at the Capitol Building. If you encourage lawlessness, you get lawlessness.
John Hawkins is the author of 101 Things All Young Adults Should Know.