An Arizona state representative tweeted an ominous biblical passage at the state’s governor, fellow Republican Doug Ducey, on Wednesday, in the latest salvo between factions of the Arizona GOP. Rep. Kelly Townsend, who was elected as a state senator last month, represents a wing of the Arizona Republican Party that has not accepted President Donald Trump’s election loss, and which takes issue with Arizona’s Republican governor for certifying President-elect Joe Biden’s victory. Earlier this week, the AZ GOP Twitter account asked followers if they were willing to “give their lives” for the cause of keeping Trump in office. Ducey appeared to chastise his party on Tuesday, tweeting that “the Republican Party is the party of the Constitution and the rule of law. We prioritize public safety, law & order, and we respect the law enforcement officers who keep us safe. We don’t burn stuff down. We build things up.”
Townsend quote-tweeted Ducey with a picture of the words “mene mene tekel upharsin” written on a wall. As extremism reporter and Daily Beast contributor Nick Martin noted, the words are an allusion to a Bible story, in which they appear on the wall before a Babylonian king. The king is informed that the message means God has found him lacking, and has numbered his days. The king is killed that night.
Townsend did not immediately return a request for comment on the meaning of the tweet, though she tweeted again late Wednesday, suggesting that she had merely been expressing disappointment with the governor.