Updated at 11:50 a.m. ET
After Congress met with the FBI and other law enforcement officials yesterday to discuss threats against them, reports continued to surface about the troubling actions taken against lawmakers.
Democratic Rep. Russ Carnahan of Missouri found a coffin on his lawn this week, Politico reports. The coffin was from a "wake" held on Sunday in front of Carnahan's home by the St. Louis Tea Party (see a clip of the event at left).
Carnahan is one of at least 10 members of Congress to receive threatening messages in the wake of the House vote on Sunday approving the Democrats' health care reform package. Hotsheet yesterday provided audio of the hostile messages Rep. Bart Stupak received and reported on the threats against Reps. Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.), Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) and others.
"Carnahan appreciates thoughtful feedback received both in favor and opposition of health insurance reform," Carnahan spokesman Jim Hubbard told Politico, adding that the lawmaker "isn't going to shy away from the importance of reform when 45,000 fellow Americans died last year due to a lack of health insurance."
A number of lawmakers are also reportedly concerned for the safety of their families. A photo of Rep. Steve Driehaus (D-Ohio)'s family appeared in an anti-health care reform newspaper ad last week, according to Politico. Rep. Phil Hare (D-Ill.) reportedly said he knows several Democrats who have told their spouses to stay away from their home districts while members of Congress are back in Washington.
Multiple politicians have reported finding the windows smashed in at their district offices, a trend which may have started because of Alabama blogger Mike Vanderboegh, the Washington Post reports. Vanderboegh maintains a libertarian blog on which he encouraged readers to throw bricks through the windows of Democratic offices to show their opposition to health care reform. Next month Vanderboegh is headlining an open-carry gun rally in Northern Virginia.
Demonstrations of anger are not just focused on congressmen.
Tea party protesters are planning a protest for this week at the home of Alan Frumin, the Senate parliamentarian, Roll Call reports (subscription needed). The Senate Sergeant at Arms, who is also working with congressmen to keep them safe, is coordinating with local law enforcement to protect Frumin. Neither Frumin or his family have been threatened, according to Roll Call.
Frumin has played a significant role in the final stage of the health care debate, since he has strong influence over what provisions are allowed in the Senate reconciliation "fix it" bill. Frumin, in fact, ruled early this morning that two minor provisions in the bill violated reconciliation rules, meaning the bill must go back to the House for another vote.
In reference to the recent threats members of Congress have received, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said today on the CBS "Early Show" that health care discussion has gone "far beyond legitimate debate." He added that politicians need to make it clear that violence is "unacceptable."
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