A Kentucky Democrat running for Congress called on Tuesday for Gov. Matt Bevin (R) to be removed from office after he suggested that an armed insurrection should take place if Hillary Clinton wins the presidential election.
Rev. Nancy Jo Kemper said during a brief press conference that lawmakers from both parties should impeach Bevin “on the grounds that calling for the taking of innocent lives is a violation of the governor’s binding legal responsibility to uphold the laws of our Commonwealth, which clearly prohibit murder.”
Bevin said during an appearance at the Value Voters Conference that, while the US could “survive” if Clinton were to be elected, “At what price? The roots of the tree of liberty are watered by what? The blood, of who? The tyrants to be sure, but who else? The patriots. It may be that of those in this room. It might be that of our children and grandchildren. I have nine children. It breaks my heart to think that it might be their blood that is needed to redeem something, to reclaim something, that we through our apathy and our indifference have given away.”
Kemper, the former executive director of the Kentucky Council of Churches, called Bevin’s remarks “Unambiguously life-threatening.”
“I believe that his call to shed the blood of fellow Americans is unconstitutional, and a violation of his sworn oath to uphold the laws of Kentucky,” she said.
Bevin addressed the issue on Monday, saying in a Twitter post that “any intelligent person” could understand his statements, and citing his own military service as an explanation.
“More than 20 years ago, I served on active duty in the military and appreciate that our freedoms come at a heavy price,” he said in a statement, adding, “Today we have thousands of men and women in uniform fighting for us overseas and they need our full backing. We cannot be complacent about the determination of radical Islamic extremists to destroy our freedoms.”
A spokesperson for the state GOP, Tres Watson, called Kemper’s statement “nothing more than a desperate act by a desperate candidate.” He also dismissed her candidacy entirely on Twitter, as seen below:
Kemper is running against incumbent Republican Rep. Andy Barr to represent the state’s 6th Congressional District. Her remarks, as posted online, can be seen below.
— Nancy Jo Kemper (@NancyJoKemper1) September 13, 2016