DALLAS — There is local and national backlash over remarks made by Republican congressional candidate Stephen Broden, who is challenging longtime incumbent Eddie Bernice Johnson.
On Friday, Broden sought to clarify his controversial comments to News 8; remarks that have now cost him at least one high-profile endorsement.
Impressed by his conservative views, The Dallas Morning News editorial board endorsed Stephen Broden back on October 4. But after his controversial interview with WFAA's Brad Watson this week, they called him back to clarify what he meant by this exchange:
BRODEN: "Our nation was founded on violence."
WATSON: "In 2010 you would urge that as an option, though?"
BRODEN: "The option is on the table. I don't think that we should ever remove anything from the table as relates to our liberties and our freedoms."
Speaking by telephone with the News' William McKenzie, Broden tried to walk that statement back.
McKENZIE: "Are you saying, unequivocally, that violent revolution is not on the table today?"
BRODEN: "It is not on the the table today."
But by the time he made that retraction, Broden was already drawing harsh reaction from former supporters like radio host Glenn Beck.
"Pastor Stephen Broden said that? That's crazy!" Beck said.
Broden blamed the statement on Watson's interview techniques, but when pressed by The News, he agreed that there might come a time for a rebellion.
BRODEN: "I believe that this is an option that is available to us as a nation, but only in the worst-case scenario, and we are nowhere near anything like that."
Instead, Broden repeatedly told The News editors that violence is not the solution
BRODEN: "Let me be clear; the only way to protect liberty is through peaceable change at the ballot box."
While The Dallas Morning News may have accepted Broden's clarifications, its editors now question his judgment. In Saturday's paper, they are withdrawing their endorsement.
They now offer no recommendation in the District 30 congressional race between Broden and Eddie Bernice Johnson.