Republican strategist Karl Rove is blasting former U.S. Rep. Barney Frank as “an unpleasant person” who “has no human courtesy” after the Massachusetts Democrat talked about taxes in connection with this week’s horrific bombings in Boston that left three dead and 150 injured.
“Have you ever seen him in a committee hearing?” Rove told Bill O’Reilly of Fox News Wednesday night. “He’s one of the most rude and obnoxious people. He has no human courtesy. He just, like, rants and raves.”
Frank had previously been interviewed by phone on CNN’s “Starting Point” to discuss Monday’s bombings at the Boston Marathon, where he was thankful for a “robust” government that could respond to the attack.
“In this terrible situation, let’s be very grateful that we had a well-funded, functioning government,” Frank said. “It is very fashionable in America … to criticize government, to belittle public employees, talk about their pensions, talk about what people think is their excessive health care, here we saw government in two ways perform very well.”
“No tax cut would have helped us deal with this or will help us recover,” he added. “This is very expensive.”
O'Reilly said Frank turned down an invitation to appear on his program Wednesday, so the host asked Rove what it was about Frank that made him appear so insensitive to the tragedy that occurred near his own former congressional district, even as families were grieving.
"Look, it's Barney Frank. You have to just live with it," Rove said. "But again, I don't think he has empathy. I don't think he relates well to ordinary people."
He added: "Who has not been touched in their heart by reading these reports of what happened in Boston, or hearing these voices who have suffered a loss almost beyond belief or have suffered grievous wounds to their family members? I mean it's horrifying, and we all feel touched by it. But there are some people who when they see and hear that kind of thing immediately seek for a political opportunity, to score an ideological point, and that's just what he does."
Earlier Wednesday, top-rated radio host Rush Limbaugh said efforts by Democrats to politicize the tragedy were "bogus" and "dishonest."
"It's cheap what the Democrats are doing," Limbaugh said.
"There are people who were killed, 150 people injured, and it's seen by people as a political opportunity. I'm sorry, it just repulses me. To run around and say, 'No tax cut would have prevented it!' Well, no tax increase would have, either. There's not a tax increase in the world that would've stopped this.
"The government could have been twice as big as it is, you could pass law after law after law, and it would not-a stopped this. I'm sitting here profoundly offended. My sensibilities are offended listening to the media and the Democrats talk about this in purely political terms. Everything is massaged and maneuvered to advance their agenda."
Limbaugh concluded: "You know what the real truth here is as evidenced by reality? The government is unable to stop these kinds of things. They stop some of them when the bad guys screw up and do something stupid, but they're not able to stop all these things. No matter what they do. ... They can pass laws, they can make phone calls, they can install cameras, but they can't stop everything. We have to be able to defend ourselves first."