Illinois Representative Adam Kinzinger’s criticism of former president Donald Trump and his service on the House January 6 select committee have prompted Mr Trump’s supporters to repeatedly call into his office and leave vulgar death threats on the office’s voicemail box.
Mr Kinzinger, an Iraq and Afghanistan veteran who still holds a reserve commission as a Lieutenant Colonel in the US Air National Guard, revealed the horrific threats in a compilation of them which he posted to his Twitter account on Tuesday.
“Threats of violence over politics has increased heavily in the last few years. But the darkness has reached new lows,” he wrote, adding that the compilation of threats was put together by the interns who are charged with answering his phones at his Washington, DC office.
One caller gets right to the point, telling the congressman: “I guess I can’t say a whole lot more other than I hope you naturally die as quickly as f***ing possible you f***ing piece of s***”.
Another calls him a “backstabbing son of a b****” and promises that he will “get stomped down in no time,” while a third caller threatens to “protest” at his Illinois home.
“We know who your family is, and we’re going to get you, get you little c***sucker, you c***sucking little bastard, gonna get your wife, gonna get your kids,” said the caller.
Yet another caller lays into Mr Kinzinger for having donated to a legal defence fund organised for the US Capitol Police officer responsible for shooting pro-Trump rioter Ashli Babbitt during the 6 January 2021 attack on the Capitol.
The officer, Lieutenant Michael Byrd, was forced to fire on Babbitt after she disregarded police commands not to climb past a barricade into an area of the Capitol from which members of the House were being evacuated, and has faced death threats and harassment from Mr Trump’s supporters since his identity became known.
The caller’s message referred to Mr Kinzinger as a “son of a b****” who “gave $200 to that Black bastard that killed Ashli Babbitt” (Lt Byrd is Black) and said he hoped “somebody like [Lt Byrd][ kills your nasty mom or your nasty wife,” and added that such a sentiment was “a hope” rather than a threat.
Yet another caller tells Mr Kinzinger he will “swing for f***ing treason,” presumably for criticising Mr Trump, while another expressed hope that the “wrath of the Lord God Almighty” be visited upon the lawmaker.
“I pray if it be God’s will that you suffer,” they added.
The Illinois congressman was first elected to the House in the 2010 “Tea Party” wave and has amassed an extremely conservative voting record over his 12 years in Congress. But after Illinois legislators redrew the lines of his district late last year, he announced he would not stand for election to a seventh term.
One caller who took note of his retirement left a message teliing Mr Kinzinger: “I’m glad you’re leaving because you’re a piece of s*** and that’s my f***ing message for you”.