Jul 5, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Kinzinger publishes compilation of threatening calls he's received

Representative Adam Kinzinger, a Republican from Illinois, speaks during a hearing of the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack.
Rep. Adam Kinzinger speaks during a Jan. 6 select committee hearing on June 23. Photo: Samuel Corum/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) on Tuesday released a three-minute compilation of threatening voicemails and phone calls his office has received, including one where a caller threatened his wife and newborn baby.

Why it matters: The audio compilation underscores the increased harassment and threats lawmakers have faced since 2017.

  • Threats against members of Congress investigated by U.S. Capitol Police increased by 144% between the first year of former President Trump's term and the first year of President Biden's, Axios' Andrew Solender reports.

Driving the news: "Threats of violence over politics has increased heavily in the last few years. But the darkness has reached new lows," Kinzinger wrote on Twitter, also warning that the audio is "foul and graphic."

  • "My new interns made this compilation of recent calls they've received while serving in my DC office," he wrote.
  • One caller threatened to go to Kinzinger's house and go after his wife and newborn baby.
  • "I'm going to come to protest in front of your house this weekend. We know where your family is, and we're going to get you. ... We're going to get your wife, going to get your kids," the caller said.
  • Another caller said that he hopes the lawmaker "naturally die[s] as quickly as f-----g possible."
  • “You’re the biggest piece of shit politician in the world. Why don’t you just leave and go away and shut your f-----g mouth, you piece of s--t," another caller said.

State of play: Kinzinger last month revealed that he and his family received a death threat over his participation in the Jan. 6 select committee hearings.

  • "This threat that came in, it was mailed to my house. We got it a couple of days ago, and it threatens to execute me, as well as my wife and 5-month-old child," Kinzinger said earlier this month.

Go deeper... Capitol Police data indicates threats to lawmakers have surged since 2017

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