The Washington Post has an update on the apparently-unprovoked attack on Senator Rand Paul by his neighbor, Rene Boucher. Paul’s injuries were initially described as “minor,” but that is not the case. Boucher broke five ribs, and Paul suffered lung contusions and facial injuries as well. Apparently Boucher blind-sided the senator while Paul was mowing his lawn, or had just completed mowing his lawn. Paul’s staff says his ability to return to his Senate duties is unknown. Hopefully his recovery will not be as difficult or as prolonged as Steve Scalise’s.
The Post says that “[a] motive is not known, and there is no indication that the attack was political in nature.” But the paper’s own reporting negates that claim:
Jeff Jones, a registered nurse who worked with Boucher at the Bowling Green Medical Center, described Boucher’s politics as “liberal.”
“He was active on social media and said some negative things about the Republican agenda,” Jones said.
“I think it was unfortunate that they lived so close together,” he added.
A Facebook page that appeared to be Boucher’s included links to articles and memes critical of President Trump and a news article about a Montana Republican congressional candidate who attacked a reporter the day before winning his seat. …
Jim Bullington, a former member of the city commission, knows both men. He said Sunday that Boucher is divorced and lives alone. Bullington described Boucher as a socialist.
“He’s pretty much the opposite of Rand Paul in every way,” Bullington said in an interview.
The neighbors had been known to have “heated discussions” about health care, Bullington said, adding that Boucher is an advocate of a national health system.
Maybe new facts will emerge. Maybe there is some other reason why Boucher assaulted Senator Paul, like a boundary dispute or an argument over a barking dog. But that seems unlikely. At present, it appears that Boucher’s assault of the Republican senator is another instance of political violence prompted by the climate of hate that has been fostered by the Democratic Party. Where will it end?