News

U.S.

Eric Holder: ‘When They Go Low, We Kick Them’

Former Attorney General Eric Holder at the Human Rights Campaign dinner in Washington, D.C., September 15, 2018. (Yuri Gripas/Reuters)

Former attorney general Eric Holder called on his fellow Democrats Wednesday to reject Michelle Obama’s famous plea for civility in the face of personal attacks in favor of a more combative approach to politics.

“Michelle [Obama] always says, ‘When they go low, we go high.’ No. No. When they go low, we kick them,” Holder told the crowd at a campaign event for Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams. “That’s what this new Democratic Party is about. We’re proud as hell to be Democrats, we’re going to fight for the ideals of the Democratic party . . . we’re in this to win.”

Holder’s sentiment echoes Hillary Clinton’s recent dismissal of the notion that civility is vital to the health of political discourse in the United States.

“You cannot be civil with a political party that wants to destroy what you stand for, what you care about,” Clinton told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour in an interview that aired Tuesday. “That’s why I believe. If we are fortunate enough to win back the House and/or the Senate, that’s when civility can start again. But until then, the only thing that the Republicans seem to recognize and respect is strength.”

Citing Senator Cory Booker’s (D., N.J.) recommendation that Americans “get up in the face” of politicians they disagree with, Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky expressed concern Tuesday about the potential for charged political rhetoric to spark violence.

“I really worry that someone is going to be killed and that those who are ratcheting up the conversation . . . they have to realize that they bear some responsibility if this elevates to violence,” Paul told a Kentucky radio station.

Most Popular

U.S.

Men Literally Died for That Flag, You Idiots

The American flag’s place in our culture is beginning to look less unassailable. The symbol itself is under attack, as we’ve seen with Nike dumping a shoe design featuring an early American flag, Megan Rapinoe defending her national-anthem protests (she says she will never sing the song again), and ... Read More
Books

The Plot against Kavanaugh

Justice on Trial, by Mollie Hemingway and Carrie Severino (Regnery,  256 pp., $28.99) The nomination and confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court was the political event of 2018, though not for the reasons anyone expected. All High Court confirmations these days are fraught with emotion and tumult ... Read More
Politics & Policy

He Just Can’t Help Himself

By Saturday, the long-simmering fight between Nancy Pelosi and her allies on one side and the “squad” associated with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on the other had risen to an angrier and more destructive level at the Netroots Nation conference. Representative Ayanna Pressley, an African-American Massachusetts ... Read More
White House

On Gratitude and Immigration

Like both Rich and David, I consider it flatly inappropriate for the president of the United States to be telling Americans -- rhetorically or otherwise -- to “go back where you came from.” In consequence, you will find no defense of the president from me, either. What Trump tweeted over the weekend was ... Read More
Education

Gender Dissenter Gets Fired

Allan M. Josephson is a distinguished psychiatrist who, since 2003, has transformed the division of child and adolescent psychiatry and psychology at the University of Louisville from a struggling department to a nationally acclaimed program. In the fall of 2017 he appeared on a panel at the Heritage Foundation ... Read More