On Eric Cantor’s Struggles with English

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia gave a speech today to the Values Voter summit.

Most have focused on how Cantor refers to the Occupy Wall Street protests as “growing mobs.”

I would point to how Cantor badly mangles the English language.

Here’s the relevant clip:

Here’s the transcription:

“If you read the newspapers today, I, for one, am increasingly concerned about the growing mobs occupying Wall Street and the other cities across the country, and, believe it or not, some in this town have actually condoned the pitting of Americans against Americans. But you sent us here to fight for you and for all Americans.”

Have fun diagramming that.

It’s telling that in every account I’ve seen of the speech, reporters have left off the introductory clause. It’s easy to see why they would, it doesn’t actually connect to the sentence as Cantor (or his speechwriter) wrote it.

Also, Cantor seems oblivious that his own support of the Tea Party over the past two years “actually condoned the pitting of Americans against Americans.”

Mainly, someone needs to send Cantor copies of both Fowler’s and the Little/Brown Handbook, stat. 🙂

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