As Election Day looms, Bay Area leaders say tone, tenor of politics needs change amid Pelosi attack

BySuzanne Phan via KGO logo
Sunday, October 30, 2022
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The attack on Paul Pelosi is drawing a lot of anger and criticism about the tone and tenor of politics. Change is being demanded.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- The attack on Paul Pelosi is drawing a lot of anger and criticism about the tone and tenor of politics as the midterm election looms. While some demand change in the rhetoric, others say more needs to be done to stop such violence.

The brutal attack on Nancy Pelosi's husband in the couple's San Francisco home is alarming. Some say the motive behind the attack is unsettling.

Political science professor Melissa Michelson is with Menlo College.

"The temperature of the country is really high and unfortunately people are lashing out at folks like the Speaker Pelosi's husband," Michelson said.

VIDEO: EXCLUSIVE: Former partner of accused Paul Pelosi attacker DePape reveals new details about suspect

We caught up with several local leaders at John's Grill in San Francisco on Saturday.

"I have received death threats," said San Francisco City Attorney David Chiu. "Most elected officials have experienced, certainly threats, certainly violent threats, and unfortunately these days, it's par for the course. And it has accelerated dramatically in the last few years after Donald Trump came into office."

RELATED: Speaker Pelosi says husband Paul 'continues to improve' after attacked with hammer at home Friday

Chiu and others say there needs to be full accountability.

Former Mayor Willie Brown says it starts at the top.

RELATED: Pelosi attacker carried zip ties, AP source says; SF DA says suspect made it to 2nd floor of SF home

"Trump should have been the first Republican condemning this violence if we are to be effective at stopping crazy people that are his supporters. He hasn't said a word," Brown said.

"The tone and tenor politics in our country has escalated into violence, and we saw it on Jan. 6. We've seen it since," said SF Police Commissioner Debra Walker. "I know our police department, our board commission, our mayor, our supervisors are all looking at how we responded proactively to make sure we keep our community safe."

RELATED: Local, nation's top political leaders respond to violent attack on Speaker Pelosi's husband

With Election Day just around the corner and with this disturbing attack on the minds of many...

"It'll remind them of the violence of Jan. 6, and I think it's going to fire people up on the democratic side of the aisle to come out and vote, because that's what they are seeing happens when the other side wins. So, I really think this will energize democratic voters to stand up against this kind of violence," said Michelson.

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