The shriekers in the tea party movement have descended to the level of stopping by a Congressman’s private home to intimidate him about the health care bill. Only there was one flaw in the brilliant plan.

A tea party organizer angry over Rep. Thomas Perriello’s (D-Va.) vote in favor of health care reform published what he thought was the freshman member’s home address on a blog, in case any readers “want to drop by” and provide a “personal touch” to their views.

Rather than giving out Perriello’s address however, the tea party activist mistakenly printed the home address of the congressman’s brother. Perriello’s brother and wife have four children under the age of 8.

The reporter tracked down the moron who gave out the wrong address, and he refuses to take it off the Internet until the brother gives up Tom Perriello’s home address. And the punch line?

Troxel, a 2005 graduate of Liberty University, added “I was a journalism major in college, so I have every reason to believe my research is accurate.”

That’d be Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University.

I would call these thug tactics if they didn’t have this Keystone Kops quality to them.

Bob Herbert and Eugene Robinson put the freak-out on the right in the proper context today. Herbert:

At some point, we have to decide as a country that we just can’t have this: We can’t allow ourselves to remain silent as foaming-at-the-mouth protesters scream the vilest of epithets at members of Congress — epithets that The Times will not allow me to repeat here.

It is 2010, which means it is way past time for decent Americans to rise up against this kind of garbage, to fight it aggressively wherever it appears. And it is time for every American of good will to hold the Republican Party accountable for its role in tolerating, shielding and encouraging foul, mean-spirited and bigoted behavior in its ranks and among its strongest supporters.


Most Republican opponents of health-care reform had the decency — and the political sense — to disavow the racist and homophobic attacks. Incredibly, some did not. Rep. Devin Nunes of California told C-SPAN: “Yeah, well I think that when you use totalitarian tactics, people, you know, begin to act crazy. I think, you know, there’s people that have every right to say what they want. If they want to smear someone, they can do it.” And Rep. Steve King of Iowa airily dismissed the incident: “I just don’t think it’s anything. . . . There are a lot of places in this country that I couldn’t walk through. I wouldn’t live to get to the other end of it.”

This is merely the boiling over of anger from a bunch of white people who cannot abide by the fact that non-whites and Democrats are legitimate voting members in their country.

David Dayen

David Dayen