Democrats in Congress are frustrated they are receiving threats of violence while Republicans downplay the role of their toxic rhetoric, according to a new report by CNN.
"Many members within the House of Representatives told CNN in recent days that they find themselves in a toxic work environment, wrought with bitter exchanges, threats and fears about what the erosion of decorum in the chamber will mean for a body that has still not recovered 10 months after the Capitol Hill riot," Lauren Hill reported. "In interviews with more than a dozen members, CNN heard from Democrats and some Republicans who say things are as bad as they can remember with no sign things will get better soon and the fears and concerns aren't just coming from members, but their families as well."
Fox noted a fascinating exchange while interviewing one member of Congress.
"In an interview with Rep. John Garamendi, a Democrat from California, Garamendi's wife Patricia could be heard in the background during the interview responding along with her husband that yes, the threats were as bad as they had ever been. Patricia Garamendi, who works closely with other spouses on events and helping provide guidance on how to navigate Congress, agreed to speak with CNN for the story. She said that it's the scariest time she can remember for the spouses of members who worry not just about their member of Congress, but their entire families," Hill reported.
The Garamendis have extensive knowledge of the demands of public service. The congressman was first elected to the California state Assembly in in 1974, less than a decade after they were married. He went on to serve as a state Senator, was elected the first California Insurance Commissioner in 1990, and then served as Deputy Secretary of the Interior in the Clinton administration. He was again elected Insurance Commissioner in 2002 and Lieutenant Governor in 2006, before being sworn into Congress in 2009.
"It took away a lot of the fun. Service is hard. Travel is hard and the issues are hard, but when you are worried about your family, it has been difficult," Patti Garamendi said. "I mean some kids are being escorted to school."
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