(PartiallyPolitics.com) White House Press Secretary Karine Jean Pierre expressed shock over the allegations that a former GOP candidate in New Mexico has been connected with “ shootings targeting the homes of state Democratic officials.”

She noted that the use of violence should not be a political tool. She pointed out how frequently President Biden had also spoken about rejecting violence and focusing on the principles of democracy. She continued on by urging leaders in both parties to “reject lies and conspiracies,” adding that the case in New Mexico is only the latest case of political violence.

On Tuesday Albuquerque police arrested Solomon Peña, a former GOP candidate for the state legislature. It is alleged that Peña is connected to shootings targeting the homes of two Bernalillo County commissioners and two state legislators. Albuquerque Police Chief Harold Medina called Peña the “mastermind” behind all four shootings which took place over the span of a month from Dec. 4, 2022, to Jan. 4.

According to the current police reports Peña was an “election denier.” The shootings all appear to be politically motivated.

The New Mexico shootings are only the latest in a long string of political violence that has taken over the U.S. in the past few years. These included the Capitol riot in 2021 and more recently the attack on Paul Pelosi, husband of former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), in their home in October 2022.

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