WASHINGTON – Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, the only black Republican in the Senate who leads the party’s efforts on police reform legislation, shared some of the hate and racism voice messages he received in recent days with his colleagues at a republican lunch behind closed doors. Tuesday.
A sample of the voice messages, shared with NBC News, revealed desecrated rants that included threats to Scott’s life, as well as references to Confederate flags and the KKK. One person called Scott “Uncle Tom,” and another said he was going to die because he was a black man in the South.
After listening to the messages, Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa tweeted his reaction in shorthand, saying, “We ALL have a responsibility to be nice even when we disagree!”
Scott’s Senate office delivered all threatening emails and voicemails to the United States Capitol Police. At least two of his colleagues have suggested that he receive security, which is an option currently being considered, a Scott spokesman said.
An increase in death threats are common during high-profile congressional debates. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, temporarily received a security detail during the debate to confirm Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh after a massive increase in threats against her.
A white supremacist in Georgia pleaded guilty in 2018 to making threats against Scott and Democratic Senate Leader Chuck Schumer of New York. And a Floridian was sentenced to 20 years in prison last year after mailing explosives to Senators Kamala Harris, D-California, Cory Booker, DN.J., former President Barack Obama, former Vice President Joe Biden and the former presidential candidate Tom Steyer.
Scott has led the Republican Party in his police reform bill, called the Justice Act. Democrats plan to block a procedural vote on the Scott bill on Wednesday, calling it “irrevocably flawed.”