U.S. Capitol Police arrested a man Monday for allegedly threatening to take an ax to Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and his family.
“Capitol Police have issued an arrest warrant for a man who threatened to kill me and chop up my family with an ax,” Paul said at a Monday event in Leitchfield, Kentucky.
The man allegedly called the threat in to Paul’s Bowling Green office. He was arrested later in the day, for which Paul thanked the Capitol Police, who aren’t commenting on the investigation, on Twitter.
“It’s just horrendous that we’re having to deal with things like this,” Paul added in his Leitchfield remarks. “I’ve had this year where it’s becoming more and more aware that we have these real threats out there.”
The alleged death threat, assuming it actually occurred, marks the third threatened or actual assault on the senator since last summer. Last June, he was participating in practice for the Republican congressional baseball team when a radical leftist opened fire on the team, missing Paul but seriously injuring Representative Steve Scalise (R-La.). In November, he was attacked by his neighbor Rene Boucher, a Democrat, supposedly over a landscaping dispute; the assault left Paul with six broken ribs, damaged lungs, and two bouts of pneumonia.
In March, Boucher pleaded guilty to assaulting a member of Congress resulting in personal injury, a federal felony. He was sentenced to 30 days in jail, followed by a year of supervised release. Prosecutors are appealing this sentence, which is far below the 21-month sentence they sought. Boucher was also ordered to pay a $10,000 fine — which, of course, goes to the government, not the injured party — and to stay away from Paul and his family.
While the appeal of the criminal case is proceeding, Paul is suing Boucher for medical costs and attorneys’ fees related to the attack, which he told CBS’ Face the Nation had made his life “a living hell” for several weeks.
As a result of all these threats and assaults, Paul said he now has security with him at all times. “I can’t go anywhere without security,” he told reporters Monday. “I can’t even go to church without being worried about someone being there.”
According to WBKO, Bowling Green, “Paul told the crowd at the meeting that something needs to be done to bridge the gap of political differences in this country.”
“The whole country needs to take a step back,” he said. “Look, I never have had a cross word with Democrats. People need to not think our political differences have to end in violence.”
He also “pointed toward national media coverage of hot-button issues as a possible reason for a political divide,” noting that he “often works with Democrats on issues, but that’s not what sells to the public,” reported WBKO.
“The norm in Washington is not anger,” Paul said. “The norm is not fights and violence, so we need to tell the public that really we can have disagreements, we can have a debate without it resorting to violence.”
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