Vandals target members of Congress in Missouri, Minnesota

Monday, October 27, 2008 | 3:50 p.m. CDT

KIRKWOOD — Federal and local authorities continued Monday to investigate a rash of vandalism in the past week on the cars and homes of eight members of Congress from Missouri and Minnesota.

On Monday, Sen. Claire McCaskill's office said her home in the St. Louis suburb of Kirkwood was painted with graffiti either Thursday night or Friday morning. Spokeswoman Maria Speiser declined to say what the graffiti said.

On Friday morning, spray-painted graffiti was discovered on two vehicles owned by U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan parked outside his St. Louis home.

One of the cars was marked "Bailout for China is Treason." The other was spray-painted "Psalm 2" and "traitor," references similar to what appeared on lawmakers' homes and garages in Minnesota earlier in the week. The Bible's Psalm 2 warns "kings of the earth" against incurring God's wrath.

In the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, vandals late Tuesday and early Wednesday spray-painted graffiti on the homes and garages of Sens. Norm Coleman and Amy Klobuchar and Reps. Jim Ramstad, John Kline, Keith Ellison and Michele Bachmann.

Coleman, Ramstad, Kline and Bachmann are Republicans. Klobuchar, Ellison, Carnahan and McCaskill are Democrats.

Sgt. Kimberly Schneider, a spokeswoman for the Capitol police, said investigators are looking into whether the Missouri and Minnesota cases are connected. She was not aware of any other cases of vandalism against members of Congress.

She would not say whether the targeted lawmakers are receiving additional protections, noting the agency does not comment on security matters. A phone call to the FBI in the St. Louis area was not immediately returned Monday.


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