House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) deleted a tweet that had warned that three wealthy Jewish Democrats are “buying” the midterm elections for their party, a posting that appeared after liberal billionaire philanthropist George Soros ― one of his targets ― had been sent a pipe bomb.
The McCarthy tweet — which also named former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg and California businessman Tom Steyer — was taken down three days before a gunman killed 11 people Saturday in an anti-Semitic attack at The Tree of Life, a Pittsburgh synagogue.
Soros has been accused by right-wing conspiracy theorists of orchestrating a range of political activities and events, including most recently the migrant caravan heading to the southern U.S. border and the protests on Capitol Hill that unsuccessfully sought to block Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court nominee. Earlier this month President Donald Trump said at a campaign rally that people criticizing Kavanaugh were “paid for by Soros — or somebody else.”
The man arrested in the synagogue shooting, Robert Bowers, blamed Jews for the caravan in a social media post.
McCarthy could not immediately be reached by Huffpost for comment about why he deleted the tweet. But his message danced dangerously close to well-trod anti-Semitic attacks that portray Jews as the central members of a wealthy international cabal that secretly controls the world.
McCarthy posted a new tweet after the Pittsburgh synagogue massacre, saying that the “heinous attacks on Tree of Life synagogue perpetrated by anti-Semitism and hate will not shake our love for each other.”
Soros’ son, Alexander Soros, blamed “hate” for the series of pipe bombs sent to Democratic political figures and other targets of harsh attacks from Trump, including his father.
Alexander Soros wrote in a New York Times Op-Ed published on Wednesday that his father’s philanthropic efforts, which seek to “support those who promote societies where everyone has a voice,” have been a target of vicious attacks, many “dripping with the poison of anti-Semitism.”
The attacks have become much worse since Trump embarked on his presidential campaign in 2015, Soros said. He noted that Trump’s candidacy was endorsed by “white supremacist and anti-Semite David Duke,” a former grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan. That’s when extremism began to slip into the mainstream of U.S. politics, the younger Soros said.
“A genie was let out of the bottle, which may take generations to put back in, ” he warned.
Florida resident Cesar Sayoc was arrested Friday and charged for the series of pipe bomb mailings. The van he was living in was plastered with photos of Trump, pro-Trump slogans and images of the president’s targets with gunsight crosshairs over their faces.