Earlier this week, a Republican congressional candidate in California was attacked by a man wielding a knife and shouting obscenities about the Republican Party and President Donald Trump.
While Rudy Peters was manning a booth at a local festival, he was allegedly attacked by 35-year-old Farzad Fazeli, who approached him with a switchblade knife “in an aggressive manner and made disparaging remarks about his political party and elected officials,” Fox News reports.
The knife reportedly malfunctioned and Peters — a U.S. Navy veteran — fended off Fazeli with physical force until he fled the scene.
In the wake of his attack, Peters told The Daily Wire he is calling for unity.
“We have to bring some sense to this country,” he said. “To me, we lost our human kindness and our respect for each other. I look to leadership on both sides and they need to get more involved and we need to have dialogue and set an example.”
“It does nobody any good when we are divided like this,” he added. “We have a national debt to worry about and jobs to bring back, immigration that what we need to be focused on — not a right against left battle.”
Peters said he never wanted the incident to go viral. “When this happened, I kept it quiet because I did not want to stir… the country is divided right now,” he said. “I didn’t want to play into that, even if it was going to give me exposure.”
“I didn’t say anything on my campaign literature or Facebook pages until it broke and I had to address it,” he said.
Peters said he did not tell his own parents, who later found out about it after Sean Hannity mentioned it on his Fox News show. “They called me in a panic,” he said.
On the motivation of the attack, he said: “I don’t know what the problem is. It is not like he came to my booth and engaged in discussion. I don’t know what provoked it, I have no idea.”
Peters said his campaign is funded by his and his wife's savings account. He stressed that he is not running to make a name for himself, but to help fix California. “I have no political aspirations to go on to bigger and better things,” he said. “I am someone who has kids and doesn’t want to be forced out of my state.”
On Tuesday, Peter’s opponent, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA), tweeted out that he was “happy to hear Mr. Peters is okay. But it’s NEVER okay to use violence to settle political disagreements (or any disagreement).”