Liberal and conservative bloggers both ridiculed what they perceived as outrageous or embarrassing statements and actions from members of the opposing party, which also represent criticism both sides make about each other: that some Republican Senate hopefuls are too extreme, and that some Democrats have charged forward with sweeping legislation, seemingly ignoring constituents' concerns.
Some liberal writers praised Republican Colorado Senate candidate Ken Buck, a Tea Party favorite, for distancing himself from former Rep. Tom Tancredo (R), when the latter said at a rally that President Obama is "the greatest threat to the United States today, the greatest threat to our liberty, the greatest threat to the Constitution of the United States, the greatest threat to our way of life, [and] everything we believe in."
That praise was short-lived, however, given Buck's comments over the weekend that Tancredo's comments had "a lot of truth."
More from Buck, who was speaking at the first annual Western Conservative Summit: "The greatest threat folks is not a single man, but rather the progressive liberal movement that is going on in this country. It is the $13 trillion of national debt; it is a huge threat to our security and financial system; Obamacare, cap and trade, card check, our disintegrating relationship with Israel. It is a huge threat to this county.”
Wrote ThinkProgress's Amanda Terkel: Buck has tried hard to insist that he is not out of the mainstream... So late Saturday, the Buck campaign did some damage control, with a spokesman stressing that Buck differed with Tancredo because of his belief that the greatest threat was more than just one man. This view, however, doesn’t make Buck any less extreme. Instead, it places him in the camp of people like Newt Gingrich (who has compared Democrats to Nazis) and far-right Mississippi state Sen. Alan Nunnelee (R) (who said that Democratic policies are “more dangerous” than 9/11 or Pearl Harbor)."
Joan McCarter at DailyKos also asserted that Buck's attempt to qualify his remarks falls flat: "Winning his primary requires agreeing with Tancredo, so to try to not look like to much of a craven fool, he has to try to qualify it. It's not the man, he says, but everything he represents that's worse than the threat of nuclear annihilation," she wrote.
"So much for the high road," wrote Washington Monthly's Steve Benen. "It was a reminder, though, of why Buck has proven to be one of the year's more extreme politicians, vying for inclusion in the Sharron Angle/Rand Paul radical contingent. He has after all trashed Social Security, called for the end of the federal student loan program, announced his opposition to church-state separation, proposed eliminating the Departments of Education and Energy, and even supporting 'Birther' craziness. And now he thinks liberals are the greatest threat facing the country. I wonder if, after his fleeting bout of civility last week, Buck's supporters took him aside and explained that respectful rhetoric just won't do in modern-day Republican politics."
NRO's Jim Geraghty was among the writers who linked to a constituent meeting featuring a rolled-up-newspaper-waving Rep. Ciro Rodriguez of Texas, who slammed the paper on a table when a constituent pushes back on his defense of the health care reform bill.
Alluding to a video of North Carolina Rep. Bob Etheridge (D)'s headlocking a student several weeks ago, Geraghty wrote, "It’s Monday, so we’re due for another Democrat in the House having an awkward moment with his constituents. Today it’s Ciro Rodriguez, Democrat of Texas. No headlocks, neck grabs, or hugs in this one, but he seems to get pretty steamed when he cites the CBO, and the constituent argues that the CBO is revising its assessment of the health care bill."
Wrote Red State's Moe Lane about the incident, "Shouting, smacking a newspaper against the table, a general ‘Do you know who I AM?’ - is this what Nancy Pelosi meant when she encouraged Democrats to go home and push back on health care? If so, by all means: keep doing it."
And Ed Morrissey at Hot Air commented, "How testy are Democrats going home from Congress to campaign in their districts? If this video of Rep. Ciro Rodriguez (D-TX) gives any indication, it may be the incumbents who are powder kegs and not their constituents. Last year, Democrats claimed that they couldn’t hold town hall meetings because of worries over potential violence from opposition to ObamaCare. The Texas Democrat seems to demonstrate that Democrats may have had a slight case of projection."
Morrissey also linked to a post from Big Government, where blogger Mike Flynn wrote, "The mid-term elections are inching closer and Democrats are having to finally admit that they are in real political trouble... If they weren’t trying to seize control of huge swaths of the economy, I might almost feel sorry for Democrat Congressman having to face voters with such a 'record.' They blindly followed the Democrat leadership and listened to the chattering class in DC who assured them everything would be okay; the progressive agenda was secretly popular with the public. Instead, I’ll enjoy video snippets like this, which shows another Democrat House member losing his temper in the face of public anger with their agenda."