Political Animal


July 20, 2012 11:59 AM Louie Gohmert, Blasphemer

By Ed Kilgore

So stupid reactions to the Aurora shootings were by no means limited to ABC News. Gaze in awe at this commentary from U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert, as reported by HuffPost’s Jennifer Bendery:

During a radio interview on The Heritage Foundation’s “Istook Live!” show, Gohmert was asked why he believes such senseless acts of violence take place. Gohmert responded by talking about the weakening of Christian values in the country.
“You know what really gets me, as a Christian, is to see the ongoing attacks on Judeo-Christian beliefs, and then some senseless crazy act of a derelict takes place,” Gohmert said.
“Some of us happen to believe that when our founders talked about guarding our virtue and freedom, that that was important,” he said. “Whether it’s John Adams saying our Constitution was made only for moral and religious people … Ben Franklin, only a virtuous people are capable of freedom, as nations become corrupt and vicious they have more need of masters. We have been at war with the very pillars, the very foundation of this country.”
Ernest Istook, the host of the show and a former Oklahoma congressman, jumped in to clarify that nobody knows the motivation of the alleged Aurora gunman. Gohmert said that may be true, but suggested the shootings were still “a terrorist act” that could have been avoided if the country placed a higher value on God.
“People say … where was God in all of this?” Gohmert said. “We’ve threatened high school graduation participations, if they use God’s name, they’re going to be jailed … I mean that kind of stuff. Where was God? What have we done with God? We don’t want him around. I kind of like his protective hand being present.”
Gohmert also said the tragedy could have been lessened if someone else in the movie theater had been carrying a gun and took down the lone shooter.

Unlike Louie Gohmert, I’m a Christian who doesn’t think God is deeply invested in my political agenda, or kills people to teach my political opponents a lesson. I am tempted to petition the Almighty to smite this blasphemer with the gift of just a tiny bit of humility. And I hope some of the people who elected him to Congress—and his colleagues—feel just a tiny bit of shame.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.


  • T-Rex on July 20, 2012 12:04 PM:

    Well, that's no stupider than the calls after the Columbine shootings to post the 10 Commandments in classrooms. The one thing as inevitable as death and taxes is the opportunistic use of tragedies by politicians trying to make a totally unrelated point. Now, how long will it be before some rightie claims that this massacre wasn't nearly as bad as the menace of gay marriage? That's exactly what Jerry Falwell did say, as you may recall, after the Oklahoma City bombing.

  • jmano on July 20, 2012 12:07 PM:

    I wonder how Louie explains the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre, the rape of Constantinople, the Thirty Years' War, and other examples of Christian ethical behavior.

  • c u n d gulag on July 20, 2012 12:10 PM:

    "I kind of like his protective hand being present.”

    Congressman Gohmert, if God did, indeed, have a hand, HeSheIt wouldn't be protecting you with it, HeShiIt would be trying to bitchslap some feckin' sense into you with it.

    I see that HeSheIt has knocked you senseless, instaed.

    He was born that way?

    Oh, that's right, that's what we Russians say about our Village Idiot's - that they've been "touched" by God.

    We just never specify if it was a loving pat, or a left-hook.

  • howard on July 20, 2012 12:18 PM:

    I believe the word you want is shithead.

  • jjm on July 20, 2012 12:22 PM:

    Germany was a Christian nation as far as I know. And look what they did! Maybe it doesn't count if non-Christians are massacred by Christians?

  • stormskies on July 20, 2012 12:28 PM:

    And, gee, just remember that Gohmert, like many others just like him, have been 'elected' by our fellow citizens ... speaks for itself in terms of a large amount of the types of humans in our population ... these types who 'reality' is nothing but a series of interlocking delusions and 'beliefs' that constitute their entire 'reality'...it is truly stunning.

  • T2 on July 20, 2012 12:31 PM:

    Gohmert is probably the most unhinged of all the TeaBagGOPers. I realize that is "saying something" but a list of his statements is absolutely astonishingly moronic. As many have said, the citizens that elect a clown like this to office must be even crazier than he is. But yet, they are all around us...building our houses, checking us out at the grocery store, repairing our plumbing, policing our streets, teaching our kids....just regular neighbors, co-workers and people we see at the mall...The crazy people are us. And that's the scary thing.

  • Anonymous on July 20, 2012 12:32 PM:

    about 50% of our population is just like this type of human below who have created an inner universe of fiction and make believe that is actually considered real by them .........these are the types that elect idiots like Gohmert


    Fox News opinion host Bill O'Reilly says that President Barack Obama's misguided disdain for capitalism is a reaction to "historical grievances" about slavery.

    During his Thursday "Talking Points" segment, O'Reilly said that footage of president's comments about business, which critics say were deceptively edited by both Fox News and Mitt Romney's campaign, proved that "the real Barack Obama has finally stood up."

    "What the president wants to do is restrain capitalism through taxation," the Fox News host explained. "If you score big, he wants a big piece of the action so he can give what you get to other people."

    "Now I could be wrong about this, but I think Mr. Obama allows historical grievances -- things like slavery, bad treatment for Native Americans and U.S. exploitation of Third World countries -- to shape his economic thinking," O'Reilly continued. "Rather than seeing the U.S.A. as basically noble, he gives the bad things about America far too much weight, leading to his desire to redistribute wealth, thereby correcting historical grievance."

    "Mr. Obama is not a communist, he's not a socialist," he conclued. "He's a social justice anti-capitalist. That's what he is."

  • Sean Scallon on July 20, 2012 12:35 PM:

    "Maybe it doesn't count if non-Christians are massacred by Christians?"

    I'll certainly count it (even though the Nazis were pagans) if you count the Soviet Union's massacre of Christians and destruction of churches, agreed? Atheists have their own murder rap to deal with throughout history.

    Getting back to the larger question at stake, it seems to me the divide among Christians is one between those what a majesterial, all-powerful, universal deity, and between those who are more into the "What a friend we have in Jesus!" kind of Christianity in which Jesus (instead of Christ) is with you everywhere, even when take a dump. Of course with this logic, when bad things happen like this massacre at a movie theater, then it has to be the victim's fault, because God wasn't there to protect them. I think that's why Gohmert said what he said.

  • ET on July 20, 2012 12:41 PM:

    Judeo-Christian beliefs don't matter for shit if the person(s) are mentally ill.

  • maggie on July 20, 2012 12:50 PM:

    But, religious people never commit crime. We should put the Catholic priests incharge, then there will be no more crime!

  • Josef K on July 20, 2012 12:51 PM:

    The formulation these fanatics (yes, I'm referring to Gohmert) seems to run something like this:

    1. "God" is all-powerful and all-knowing, and therefore will stop bad things from happening.

    2. Bad things happen when we "turn away from God".

    3. Ergo, if we only "turn to God" then bad things won't happen.

    4. Ergo, "God", who is all-powerful and all-knowing, doesn't think we are toeing the line.

    5. Ergo, "God" deliberately makes bad things happen so we will toe the line.

    "God" sounds like a bit of a pyschopath. Gohmert and company can keep it.

  • royalblue_tom on July 20, 2012 12:54 PM:

    The athiests aren't the ones claiming that having Jesus on your side makes you a better person, as Gohmert is. so with Sean and jjlm showing that people have been shitty to other people regardless of their religious choices (germans/soviets meh), means Gohmert's hypothesis is so much horsepucky.

  • TrustUsNotThem on July 20, 2012 12:56 PM:

    Interesting that a deluded, sociopathic and mentally ill politician thinks he has insights into the motivation behind someone equally as insane. We don't know the killer's motives, but I'd be willing to bet a fair amount of my money on the fact that his political leanings are on the right. Most Republican'ts are, after all, sociopaths.

  • bluestatedon on July 20, 2012 12:59 PM:

    Bag of hammers, box of rocks, pile of hair—none of them do justice to the idiocy of perhaps the dumbest man in Congress, nor the voters who keep re-electing him.

  • tony on July 20, 2012 1:09 PM:

    and to put Gohmert's words beside Zimmerman telling Hannity that the shooting of Trayvon Martin was "God's will." I am now extremely baffled.
    I think none of these people know what the hell they are talking about.

  • CyraNose59 on July 20, 2012 1:15 PM:

    Is this the same goober who forgot the commandmentre: bearing false witness"? who, along with Michele Bachmann, so recently smeared Huma Abedin, an honorable public servant? Douche alert! Pack him up and send him back to Rick Perry's Free Republic of Texas

  • CyraNose59 on July 20, 2012 1:16 PM:

    Is this the same goober who forgot the commandment re: bearing false witness"? who, along with Michele Bachmann, so recently smeared Huma Abedin, an honorable public servant? Douche alert! Pack him up and send him back to Rick Perry's Free Republic of Texas

  • navamske on July 20, 2012 1:19 PM:

    Typical. A tragedy occurs, and GOhMERt PYLEs on.

  • JTrott on July 20, 2012 1:24 PM:

    Evangelical terrorism.

  • tcinaz on July 20, 2012 1:54 PM:

    Louie Gohmert belongs in the same mental ward that James Holmes was not admitted to.

  • Still Waters on July 20, 2012 2:20 PM:

    Evangelical politicians boast about their faith at no risk because their opponents never call them out for un-Christian behavior.

    That said, Ed, I hope you noticed that Ed Rollins actually called out Michelle Bachmann "as a devout Christian." I might have preferred that he call her out for "false witness" instead of "reckless behavior", but it was a step in the right direction. Maybe some of the god-fearing folks in the Minnesota 6th District were listening.

  • veblen's dog on July 20, 2012 2:21 PM:

    Louis Gohmert, Texas Proud, Texas Stupid.

  • Rick B on July 20, 2012 2:23 PM:

    Louie Gohmert is elected to Congress because he caters to the rural yahoos in deep East Texas. East Texas is a hotbed of deeply ignorant fundamentalist protestant religion. It's also a low cost of living area where the losers in modern society can live on the pittance they are capable of earring without a lot of education.

    Gohmert knows his audience well and plays them like a stringed instrument. He is a master of using the media to make his loser constituents feel better about themselves. If he acted sane they'd think he was acting better than them and they'd resent it.

    Like Rick Perry he is a life-long politician who hooked his star to the social conservatives when they took political control over Texas. The Governorship of George W. Bush was another aspect of their political control of Texas state-wide offices.

    Gohmert is no fool. He's just a perpetual politician who knows how to stay in the current memory and good graces of his constituents. As Texas urbanizes, his constituents are the losers in the process of social change so they feel displaced from the social position they had or thought they should have. Among other losses, their psychological wage has been taken from them. They retreat to low cost of living areas, to comforting fundamentalist religions which make few intellectual demands, and to demagogue politicians.

    Gohmert is a predatory politician who lives well because of the pain his constituents feel. He knows exactly what he is doing, what he is saying, and how he will personally profit from doing and saying that. There are a lot of politicians just like him still in the old South and in other economically declining regions.

  • Josef K on July 20, 2012 2:54 PM:

    I've just had an unhappy thought: this effectively shuts down any further talk about Romney's tax returns, possibly for good.

    Or perhaps not. We'll have to see.

  • smartalek on July 20, 2012 3:02 PM:

    "I hope some of the people who elected him to Congress—and his colleagues—feel just a tiny bit of shame."

    A triumph of hope over experience, I'm afraid.
    Anyone among the current crop of GOOPers with even the tiniest capacity for shame decamped from them ere now.
    (Among them are the recently increased numbers among the so-called "independents," the ostensible "swing voters," who actually never vote anything but Publican. That they won't admit their actual voting identities is both the proof, and the limit, of their capacities for shame.)
    At the very least, the vast majority of those left -- and it's not an unsafe bet that it's now all of them -- are beyond hope, and beyond help.
    The best we can do is to try to isolate them, and keep their infection from spreading.

  • zandru on July 20, 2012 4:05 PM:

    @navamske: Hey! You profaned the name of Gomer Pyle!!

  • Eric k on July 20, 2012 4:07 PM:

    Even dumber and dangerous than his god stuff is his comment that someone with a gun could have helped.

    Good lord how stupid is he? A crowded theater full of people scrambling for the exits and he wants more people to have guns? If people in the audience had tried to return fire the victim count would increase by the number of bullets they had.

  • JR on July 20, 2012 4:24 PM:

  • labman57 on July 20, 2012 6:11 PM:

    Since so many tea party legislators and pundits do not believe in the scientific process, it's not shocking that these same mental midgets would be incapable of understanding the danger of relying on biased supposition, isolated anecdotal accounts, and non-causal correlational data as the basis for establishing public policy.

    Until a thorough investigation has been done, it would be premature to speculate on the motivations of this deranged individual that led to this horrific act.

    On a side note, it's curious that the Religious Right's perception of God appears to be one of an ego-centric, malevolent, micro-managing sadist -- somewhat akin to how many of them treat their wives.

    Yet another reason why religion and public policy make poor bedfellows.

  • Doug on July 20, 2012 7:31 PM:

    Rather than "smiting" Rep. Gohmert with some humility, which would probably go "unnoticed, unwept and unmissed", I'd settle for lock-jaw.
    Now THAT would be smiting!

  • DP812 on July 20, 2012 7:33 PM:

    I live in Japan, a country where Christianity is very much the minority. Our rates of crimes and violent deaths are far below those of America. So feed me more nonsense about how America, one of the most Christian countries in the world, is such a violent place because of a lack of Christian values. Perhaps it has more to do with the gun fetishization pushed by people like Gohmert himself...