Solomon Peña, a defeated candidate for the state legislature in New Mexico, has been charged in a plot to shoot at the homes of four Democratic office-holders in Albuquerque. The shocking incident has been linked to the narrative of false claims of a stolen election propagated by former President Donald Trump, and has been met with widespread condemnation and calls for gun control.
The police allege that Peña paid four accomplices to drive past the officials’ homes and fire at them, and that Peña personally participated in at least one shooting. He allegedly provided firearms and cash payments, and intended to cause “serious injury or death” to the people inside the homes, according to police documents. Fortunately, no one was injured.
The most recent incident happened on January 3, when at least a dozen rounds were fired into the Albuquerque home of state Senator Linda Lopez. Lopez initially thought the loud bangs she heard were fireworks, but her 10-year-old daughter awoke thinking a spider had crawled across her face, and Lopez later noticed bullet holes in the house.
Albuquerque Police Chief Harold Medina said he has no doubt that Peña was motivated by Trump’s false claims of election fraud following the former president’s 2020 defeat.
The attempted attacks on the homes of four Democratic officials in New Mexico are a shocking reminder of the dangers of false claims of a stolen election, and of the need for gun control. While no one was injured, the fact that a defeated candidate allegedly paid four accomplices to fire at their homes is an alarming sign of the extent to which political violence can be incited. This incident should be a wake-up call to all those who continue to propagate false claims of a stolen election, and to all those who have the power to enact meaningful gun control.
The arrest of Solomon Peña in a plot to shoot at the homes of four Democratic office-holders in Albuquerque has prompted widespread condemnation and accusations that the stolen-election rhetoric among supporters of former president Donald Trump continues to incite violence. Peña allegedly conspired with four other men to steal cars, fire at the homes of the officials, and cause “serious injury or death” to the people inside the homes. Thankfully, no one was injured, but the incident has sparked a push for gun control and a reminder of the dangers of election denialism.