How Long Until Democrats Storm the Capitol?

The party's climate rhetoric is increasingly radical, dangerously insurrectionist

July 26, 2022

Are Democrats trying to incite an insurrection? The party's rhetoric on the "existential threat" of so-called climate change has grown increasingly radical and vitriolic of late, its policy solutions alarmingly anti-democratic in nature. Given the way some Democratic politicians have implicitly endorsed subversive tactics to enact their controversial agenda, one can't help but wonder why outraged liberal voters aren't storming the U.S. Capitol building at this very moment.

"This is our last chance to prevent the most catastrophic—and costly—effects of climate change," Sen. Ron Wyden (D., Ore.) told the New York Times earlier this month. "We can't come back in another decade and forestall hundreds of billions—if not trillions—in economic damage and undo the inevitable human toll ... failure really is not an option here."

Wyden's remarks came in response to Sen. Joe Manchin's (D., W.Va.) decision to pull out of negotiations over a legislative package including "the largest single federal investment in American history toward addressing the toll of climate change," according to the Times. Climate activists were devastated by Manchin's reluctance to support a massive spending bill during a time of record inflation.

Leah Stokes, an environmental policy professor who has advised congressional Democrats on climate legislation, reportedly "sobbed" in response to Manchin's announcement. "The stakes are so high," she said. "It's just infuriating that he is condemning our own children." Tiernan Sittenfeld, a lobbyist for the League of Conservation Voters, echoed that sentiment. "There truly aren't words, at least words that are suitable for printing in the New York Times, for how appalled and outraged we are," she said.

Rep. Adam Schiff (D., Calif.) poured gasoline on the raging fire, writing: "We have a narrow window to act on climate change before it’s too late. And that window is closing rapidly. History will not be kind to those who stand in the way of action. If there is anyone left to write it." Democrats began to embrace extremist rhetoric following the Supreme Court's decision on June 30 to limit the Environmental Protection Agency's power to regulate greenhouse gas emissions absent the explicit authorization of Congress.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) called the ruling a "catastrophe" and urged Democrats to "do away with" the Senate filibuster "for the sake of the planet." Sen. Ed Markey (D., Mass.) argued that humanity would not survive unless Democrats packed the Supreme Court with liberal justices who would overturn the "illegitimate" ruling and "prevent climate chaos."

On Monday a group of outraged congressional staffers were arrested after storming the office of Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) and demanding action on climate change legislation. "We are putting our bodies on the line because we have no other choice," wrote Saul Levin, a climate justice adviser to Rep. Cori Bush (D., Mo.), who has accused oil companies of killing "millions" by promoting "white supremacy" and "environmental racism."

Given the incendiary nature of this Democratic rhetoric, it is no surprise that their staff members attempted to foment an insurrection on Capitol Hill. Meanwhile, activists are plotting to "shut down" the congressional baseball game on Thursday unless lawmakers enact "strong climate legislation." Now or Never, an organization with ties to left-wing billionaire George Soros, has warned that "failure will have serious consequences." The group's threatening language is particularly ominous in light of the 2017 attempted assassination of GOP lawmakers by an armed left-wing activist who targeted a congressional baseball practice.

These efforts to bully lawmakers into passing climate legislation by threatening violence come at a time when Republican officials are increasingly under threat of physical violence. Last month, for example, police arrested a would-be assassin outside the home of Supreme Court justice Brett Kavanaugh, who had been the target of left-wing activists seeking to "expand the current political crisis." Last week authorities arrested (and quickly released) a deranged man who attempted to stab Rep. Lee Zeldin (R., N.Y.), who is running for governor of the Empire State.

Alas, the Democratic Party's vitriolic and implicitly insurrectionist rhetoric on climate change has shown no signs of abating. Former vice president Al Gore on Monday compared opponents of radical climate legislation to the police officers in Uvalde, Texas, who failed to intervene during the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School. "They heard the screams, they heard the gunshots—and nobody stepped forward," he said.

The midterm elections are fast approaching. Democrats are widely expected to lose control of the House of Representatives and may struggle to maintain their razor-thin majority in the Senate. Will they accept the election results? Congress is unlikely to enact "strong climate legislation" via the conventional democratic process anytime soon, and especially not in 2023. Radical action to subvert democracy is the only option. If Democratic politicians and voters actually believe their own rhetoric about humanity's last chance to save the planet from literal child killers, why wouldn't they storm the Capitol?