Margaret Brennan—the anchor of Face the Nation on CBS News—called out Minnesota Republican Representative Tom Emmer after he tweeted "Let’s #FirePelosi” with a video showing him shooting a gun days before an assailant attacked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's husband Paul Pelosi with a hammer.
Emmer tweeted the message on October 26 as part of a bid to motivate his fellow Republicans to vote in the upcoming midterm elections by suggesting Pelosi is against Second Amendment rights.
You can see his post below.
Emmer later appeared on Face the Nation to answer questions from Brennan about his tweet, though he attempted to deflect by claiming that there was no news coverage blaming Democrats when a Bernie Sanders supporters shot and wounded Louisiana Republican Representative Steve Scalise and five others in 2017 at a congressional baseball charity game.
Brennan noted that there had in fact been "extensive coverage" on the attack and noted that she was not, contrary to what Emmer might believe, referring to any Republican rhetoric but was merely asking him to explain why he posted the tweet in the first place considering that it could be interpreted as a call for political violence.
You can watch what happened in the video below.
After sharing the contents of Emmer's tweet on the air, Brennan said:
"I'm not talking about your rhetoric. I'm talking about what you posted. You're shooting a gun. Our viewers just saw it."
After Emmer failed to answer Brennan's questions, saying that he and his supporters were merely "Exercising our Second Amendment rights, [and] having fun," Brennan had to tell him—twice—that they were not having "a debate about the Second Amendment."
And once Emmer once again brought up the shooting of Scalise, Brennan went further:
"Okay. Looking at your candidates, Republican candidates have spent more than 116 million on ads that mentioned Speaker Pelosi by name in their cycle. If this is about the issues, why shouldn't make it about the issues?"
"Why not depersonalize it?"
Emmer replied that he was "absolutely" talking "about the issues," pointing to "double digit inflation," "exploding cost of living," and "a crime wave across this country" that he implied is the "direct result" of Democratic policymaking.
Brennan didn't take the bait, asking:
"In this moment, we are eight days out [from the election], don't you think this needs to change? Why not pull some of these ads?"
"Why not just delete your tweet?"
Emmer again brought up cost of living, high crime rates, saying that these are "the issues that are top of mind for every voter in this country" and why Republicans are favored to win the midterms.
To that, Brennan responded:
"That's what our projections are showing. But I would suggest more pink slips, fewer weapons in our ads in this environment."
"Sir, thank you for joining us on Face the Nation. We'll be right back. Stay with us."
Many have praised Brennan for refusing to back down despite Emmer's attempts to dodge her questions.
Paul Pelosi was attacked with a hammer at the couple's residence in the Pacific Heights neighborhood of San Francisco, California on October 28. He was seriously injured underwent surgery for a fractured skull; his doctors expect him to make a full recovery.
David DePape, a 42-year-old California man, was arrested at the scene on suspicion of attempted homicide and other felonies. He had intended to kill Speaker Pelosi and yelled, "Where is Nancy, where is Nancy?" during the attack, according to police who arrested DePape at the scene.
DePape had embraced far-right political conspiracy theories including QAnon, Pizzagate, ideas related to COVID-19 vaccine misinformation, and Holocaust denial.