White House counselor Kellyanne Conway pushed back Wednesday on Rep. Joaquin Castro after the brother and campaign chairman of 2020 presidential hopeful Julian Castro defended his decision to tweet out the names of prominent Trump donors in the San Antonio area and their employers.
Speaking on "America's Newsroom," Conway scoffed at Castro's defense of the tweet, in which he said the names were already public record.
"It doesn't matter that it's public record. It matters that he's put together some kind of target list and he's trying to make life miserable or worse for law-abiding citizens who are expressing their First Amendment right to put their money where their politics is," she said, calling for Castro to remove the tweet.
"He's a member of Congress, he has a responsibility and accountability to protect the population, not to try to make them a target."
Castro continued to defend his tweet Wednesday morning, arguing that he does not want anyone to be targeted or harassed and does not want businesses to face boycotts.
"You're giving money for somebody that's going after a community and people have gotten killed because of that," said Castro on MSNBC's "Morning Joe,"
Castro said the tweet was meant as a "lament" that respected people in the San Antonio community are giving money and that the funds are being used to "fuel hate," linking the president's rhetoric to the mass shooting in El Paso.
Host Willie Geist pressed Castro on the likelihood that the people who are named in his tweet will be harassed. Castro said the donors' names are public information and the graphic was already circulating online before his Twitter account shared it.
Castro had doubled down on the post on Tuesday after facing backlash from the Trump campaign and Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., who was severely wounded at a congressional baseball practice in 2017 by a politically motivated attacker, rebuked Castro on Twitter.
"People should not be personally targeted for their political views. Period. This isn’t a game. It’s dangerous, and lives are at stake. I know this firsthand," he wrote.