Florida Republican and hopeful-state-House-Rep. Joshua Black’s social media presence is chock full of tea party-style criticisms of President Obama, but the language used in a tweet on Martin Luther King Jr. Day has taken that rhetoric to a whole new level.
“I’m past impeachment,” Joshua Black, who is also African American, tweeted on Monday. “It’s time to arrest and hang him high.”
Shortly thereafter, a fellow Republican candidate hopped into the mix to call Black out for his language.
That began a back-and-forth that eventually led Black to take to his Facebook page to explain exactly why he thought President Obama deserved to be hanged for traitorous activities.
“To everyone who was offended that I said that the POTUS should be hanged for treason, this is the man who droned Al-Awaki [sic] on ‘suspicion of terrorism’–not proof–and later killed his 15-year-old son for nothing more than being his son,” Black wrote, also alleging Obama sought to have both Bradley Manning and Eric [sic] Snowden “executed for treason when they didn’t kill anyone.”
“I make no apologies for saying that the President is not above the People,” he added in his post. “If ordinary Americans should be executed for treason, so should he.”
“So, don’t stop at impeachment,” he continued. “Remove him. Try him before a jury (the very right that he arbitrarily denied to al-Awaki and his 15-year-old son), and, upon his sure convictions, execute him.”
The chairman of the local Republican party told theTampa Bay Times that Black doesn’t know what he’s talking about in regards to the drone strike and that his rhetoric is out of line.
“It is impossible to accept this statement,” Pinellas GOP Chairman Michael Guju said. “This is wholly unacceptable and unduly provocative.”
Republican Gov. Rick Scott weighed in on the comments as well, according to AP reporter Gary Fineout, who tweeted Tuesday afternoon that Scott called them “outrageous.”
Black’s opponent in the House race, Democratic state Rep. Dwight Dudley, echoed the outrage, saying he was “stunned” and that Black should be able to disagree with Obama without calling for him to be hanged. “It’s dangerous and unbecoming for someone who wants to lead to call for such violence and extremist action,” he told the Times.
Latvala continued bashing Black’s rhetoric and extremism on Monday.
Black insists on his candidate website that his party has “a serious communication problem.”
“Everything we say sounds like spears,” he wrote. “We find ways to energize our core supporters, the people who will always only ever vote Republican, but we have a hard time explaining to anyone else why they should listen to our solutions.”