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. DXinTX

    I blame the American people... those who voted for The Party of Hate and those Democrats who stay at home and didnt cast a vote....Republicans could care less about the American people they on care about winning and destroying the Obama Administration by any means necessary, but "we the people" gave them the power....

    July 27, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  2. Gop

    Debbie Wasserman Schultz how did this ugly hag ever get elected. wow you Democrats do pick some ugly hags to office. and the very ignorant ugly hags as well.

    July 27, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  3. sassypants

    Oh my goodness. Don't you have better things to do than complain about this?

    July 27, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  4. ThinkAgain

    As David Gergen so simply put it earlier today in an interview, now is the time for statesmanship and adult behavior. This nonsense of no compromise by Republicans and signing pledges to Grover Norquist, all of which are hurting the economic well-being of our country needs to stop.

    Republican, put COUNTRY before party, for once. Grow up, grow a pair and accept the fact that compromise is part of governing – and that cuts alone will NOT balance the budget. Sacrifice must be made by ALL Americans – including having the rich pay their fair share.

    July 27, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  5. Cole

    World's ugliest woman. Looks like a cross between Chelsea Clinton and a lamprey.

    July 27, 2011 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  6. Bruce L

    Why the f-ck can't these stupid people on both sides concentrate on what's important here, instead of playing "gotcha" and trying to score idiotic public relations points. This woman looks like she's as much a dingbat as Pelosi, just like Boehner looks like the Fred Willard of national politics with that half-baked proposal of his. FIRE THEM ALL, from the dithering president on down.

    July 27, 2011 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  7. Culo

    Ask Clyburn about his questiuonable finances at SC State Univ. He's no paragon of virtue nor in the position to be recommending behavior.

    July 27, 2011 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  8. Eric

    Rep. Schultz, I'm glad that you have clearly solved our nation's budget problems, made plans to put Americans back to work and reduced federal red tape, and things are so smooth that you can complain about someone's choice of movie clips.

    Oh, Wait...

    Here's an idea, don't whine like a kindergartner because someone called you a dumb-face, act like an adult member of Congress who has a job to do; and hint, real leaders don't make the news when they talk, but rather when they do things.

    July 27, 2011 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  9. sharky

    Ah so if a Republican uses a violent scene or something from a movie it is wrong, if a Democrat does the same it is correct and acceptable.


    July 27, 2011 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  10. anus mcmanglerod

    my daddy can beat up your daddy.

    July 27, 2011 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  11. Steve (not Steven

    Honestly, does anyone give Debbie Wasserman-Schultz any respect? This woman is a buffoon. I'm ashamed she is from Florida.

    July 27, 2011 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  12. Adam

    "Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina, who said Americans deserve better behavior among lawmakers."

    Forget the behavior, we just need better lawmakers.

    July 27, 2011 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  13. Max

    The guy is a lousy actor.

    July 27, 2011 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  14. Joe

    I am mad about this, but only because Ben Affleck is such a bad actor.

    July 27, 2011 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  15. MB Seattle

    The republicans are in for their masters not the American people who elected them to serve the country. The Republicans are bought and paid for.

    July 27, 2011 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  16. NoCommentCNN

    I never thought I see the day come that America would default on its responsibility towards its debt. But that day has come.
    America will default!
    Not because it can't pay its bills but because two political parties decided that this issue will gain them more power and more votes over the other in the next election. The American people are being used as pawns in a deadly game of politics will little regard towards governing. This country's Freedom and Liberty are being risked for the gain of so few. Truly a very un-American course of action is being played out in the nation's capital.
    I hope the American people stop supporting these two parties and begin to understand that neither party has the best interests of our great nation as a priority.

    July 27, 2011 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  17. Nick

    ROFL. More political pots calling the kettles black. Yup, I always watch Braveheart so I can maintain my faith and never for the gratuitous violence.

    July 27, 2011 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  18. greg

    The GOP metaphor is sick.

    July 27, 2011 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  19. corey

    Ben will be mad!! He's a great democrat!!!

    July 27, 2011 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  20. Lynne

    "hurt some people" haven't they been doing enough of that already? Give to the rich, screw the middle class and kick the poor even farther down!!!

    I am tired of being screwed without a please or thank your, or a dinner invitation!!!! Now that want to hurt me?????

    And they wonder why they have been getting some many phone calls and emails over the last few days!!!!

    The GOP needs to grow the heck up!

    July 27, 2011 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  21. DrJStrangepork

    Sad... Repub's, quit acting like bullies. Dem's, nobody likes a tattle-tail.

    July 27, 2011 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  22. Vanity

    I can't hear anything that Debbie Wasserman Schultz – her unattractiveness deafens me.

    July 27, 2011 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  23. needNewGov

    They should all shut-the-hell-up and do their jobs. My God, our government leaders (and I use that term very loosely) can't do anything but snipe at each act like idiots. They're worse then kids. GET RID OF THEM ALL AND START OVER.

    July 27, 2011 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  24. LKT

    These bozos use movie scene because these politicians have lost the art of rhetoric-if they ever had it.

    July 27, 2011 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  25. Geezer

    I don't know why anyone is surprised. Republicans are the party of moral values and good fiscal converservative policies. Smear tactis, hypocracy and screwing people left and right is just a by-product when you try to save job creators like hedge fund manager to ensure they only have to pay 15% on their earned income.

    July 27, 2011 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
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