GOP use of Ben Affleck movie clip riles Dems
July 27th, 2011
02:44 PM ET
10 years ago

GOP use of Ben Affleck movie clip riles Dems

Washington, D.C. (CNN) - The Democratic National Committee went after Republicans for using a violent movie clip to incite unity at a House Conference meeting Tuesday.

In the scene, from "The Town," actors Ben Affleck and Jeremy Renner hold a short pep talk, where one tells the other that he needs his help as they go "hurt some people." They then drive off to an apartment and bludgeon two men.

DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz called the use of the clip a "sad metaphor" of how Republicans have acted during negotiations to raise the debt ceiling.

"They could have used 'Hoosiers,' 'Rudy' or 'Band of Brothers'," Wasserman Schultz said in a press conference Wednesday. "But this was the choice they made."

Affleck, who also wrote and directed "The Town," responded to the incident Wednesday from Turkey, where he's working on his next movie, "Argo."

"I don't know if this is a compliment or the ultimate repudiation– but if they're going to be watching movies, I think 'The Company Men' is more appropriate," Affleck said in a statement.

In 2010's "The Company Men," Affleck stars as a white-collar worker who loses his job when the recession forces his corporation to downsize.

The Florida congresswoman interpreted Tuesday's movie clip as Republicans wanting to hurt either the Democrats and President Obama in the debt talks–or the American people through entitlement cuts.

"Now is the time for compromise, not for pain," Wasserman Schultz said.

Republicans, meanwhile, brushed off the attacks and said the DNC is focused on the wrong issue.

"With our country in the midst of a debt crisis, Debbie Wasserman Schultz should spend more time pushing her president to put forth a debt ceiling plan and less time holding press conferences about movies," said Kirsten Kukowski, press secretary for the Republican National Committee.

Schultz was joined by Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina, who said Americans deserve better behavior among lawmakers.

But when asked by a reporter if Democrats had ever shown violent movies to "fire up the troops," Clyburn recalled a time when "Braveheart" was shown at a caucus meeting after Republicans took over the House majority.

Clyburn said the clip was used "as a metaphor for us maintaining our own faith in the process."

soundoff (282 Responses)
  1. ConservaFASCISTS/Dutch, Bad Newz, VA

    i guess they haven't learned a lesson from the Gabbie Giffords shooting. These terrorists republicans are inciting violence. After what we've just witnessed in Norway, this is not the kind of rhetoric politicians should be using.

    July 27, 2011 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  2. S. In California - Obama 2012

    The republicans are nothing more than racist, blood thirty pigs who will not stop until the "colored" man is out of the WH and middle and poor people are "back in their place". I am determined to get as many people possible to vote AGAINST them and kick them OUT! What a psychopathic, sick and twisted band of people they are – and I am beginning to think ALL of them are violent and right wing extremists. Not just a few of them.

    July 27, 2011 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  3. AEK

    Anybody surprised by this? A show of hands? Well, there ya go!

    July 27, 2011 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  4. 'merica ruined by rethugs

    Is $arah Paylin going to condemn this too? She knows all to well about surveyor symbols and all. Speak up $arah!

    July 27, 2011 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  5. Nancy in WA

    Did we learn nothing in Arizona, you nutjobs.

    July 27, 2011 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |

    Snookie Palin's movie tanked at the box office so she is desperate for Bachmann's money and media attention.

    July 27, 2011 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  7. logic in LA

    The irony of using a clip of an extreme liberal and a gay man is a riot! My main question is – did they get permission form the producers to use the clip and did they pay for rights?

    July 27, 2011 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  8. Northdakatax

    Really, Debbie? A film clip? REALLY??? You don't have any bigger fish to fry today???

    July 27, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  9. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I saw the movie The Town. Chums thick as thieves and loyal to each other, killing and stealing. VERY apt metaphor for the Republican Thugs currently in office.
    What else can you expect from low-class, low-brow,lowlifes like Boo-Hoo, Cantor, Palin, Bachmann et al?
    Come on now, act like you know what we're dealing with here.

    Way to stay on them Ms. Wasserman. I like your spunk.
    Obama 2012

    July 27, 2011 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  10. Chas in Iowa

    The cold hearted legislators know what they are saying when they say we're going to cut entitlements. It means they are going to throw the elderly to the curb.
    "Somebody's going to get hurt".
    Somehow it fits the GOP, it just surprizes me they are so blunt and yet the public by and large let them get away with it.

    July 27, 2011 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  11. BestGran3

    Did Ben Affleck give them permission to use this clip?

    July 27, 2011 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  12. End GOPorate greed.

    You can depend on the GOP for one thing – every time the do something dispicable – which is often – they accuse some one else of doing it.

    July 27, 2011 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  13. Expresss

    My god that's an ugly woman. Why did CNN have to post such a huge photo of her so soon after lunch?
    What is it with dem women especially those with hyphenated names or names that start with Janet?
    There's Debbie Wasserman Shultz, Hillary Rodham Clinton and then theres Janet Reno, Janet Napolitano...woof

    July 27, 2011 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  14. Lolo

    A movie when we have a crisis? I hope a movie can help Americans when they can't pay their bills. These people are a joke.

    July 27, 2011 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  15. Dale

    Stay classy, GOP.

    July 27, 2011 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  16. pastorspet

    This tactic does not surprise me. We have become so polarized that the Republicans and Democrats cannot get along. The Republicans aren't happy because the democrats won't give them EVERYTHING THEY WANT. Republicans are spoiled children, Anyone who disagrees with them needs to shut up and die. Democrats would probably do the same thing, except right now the Republican Party has more spoiled children than the Democratic Party.

    July 27, 2011 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  17. Godfather

    This type of Politics reminds me of Third world politics where character assassinations and doing anything to win a point is acceptable.

    Years ago I was told that politics is the last refuge of a scoundrel. I never believed till now.

    Remember this much

    Great Empires do not fall to foreign enemies, they fall from within.

    I leave to rest of the board members to debate if the process has begun.

    July 27, 2011 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  18. Ian

    Ha! Those last two paragraphs perfectly sum up this whole clusterjunk.

    July 27, 2011 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  19. Randy, San Francisco

    Why should anyone be surprised with the violent imagery and language from a Republican Party overly influenced by neo-fascist conservative Tea Party zealots?

    July 27, 2011 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  20. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    And yes, I said KILLING AND STEALING and I meant it.
    The Rethugs are doing anything and everything possible to KILL the economy's steady resuscitation; they are intent in their avid and almost RABID protection of the interests of their corporate masters in killing what is left of the middle class; they are going to destroy our country by allowing their special "interest" groups to continue to prosper and grow their wealth through loopholes and unnecessary subsidies.
    They are STEALING the power of your vote through Supreme Court decisions, Jim Crow-like sanctions, re-districiting and anything else they can think of to get themselves back into the White House . And if you think htey give a good God-darn over your 401k heading back down into the toilet you better think again.
    Yes. Thieves and Murderers (shall we talk about Iraq?) that sounds about right to me.

    July 27, 2011 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  21. ngc1300

    A much more appropriate choice would have been " Dumb and Dumber".

    July 27, 2011 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  22. Ringo

    What a bunch of thugs & punks!

    July 27, 2011 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  23. Pat in IL

    We need to start electing adults instead of 7th grade mentality children.

    July 27, 2011 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  24. nobama

    This chick is the biggest whiner in congress. Her district should be embarassed that they elected her.

    July 27, 2011 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  25. Rickster

    lol....democrats are not only loons but they are pansies as well.

    July 27, 2011 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
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