Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC) says she has gotten death threats since yesterday’s House hate crimes debate during which she called the murder of Matthew Shepard a hoax. Foxx is now backing off her statement.
A spokesperson for the congresswoman said Foxx’s office has received hate mail over the past 24 hours, including death threats. Foxx later said her comments didn’t convey what she meant to say. “The term ‘hoax’ was a poor choice of words used in the discussion of the hate-crimes bill,” Foxx said in a statement. “Mr. Shepard’s death was nothing less than a tragedy, and those responsible for his death certainly deserved the punishment they received.” Foxx said in her statement that she relied on two news reports for her comments about robbery being a motive for the slaying. “Referencing these media accounts may have been a mistake, but if so, it was a mistake based on what I believed were reliable accounts,” she said.
A Facebook group has already sprung up calling for Foxx’s resignation.