Democratic Rep. Pete Stark apparently didn't take kindly to the news that former state Assemblyman Alberto Torrico has decided to endorse his Democratic opponent in the 15th Congressional District.
Torrico recounted his account of the conversation to the National Journal:
After "calling me a turncoat," Torrico said that Stark "questioned my mental health. He asked me if I was well, if I was ill. He said that he was concerned for the safety of my children, that maybe he should send a social worker to my house to check on their safety because I'm clearly ill." ...
During their conversation, Stark, who is the only openly atheist member of Congress, also questioned Torrico's Christian faith, Torrico said. "He took the opportunity to say he'd come to my house and teach my children about the Christian faith because I couldn't," he said.
"From an atheist, I found it interesting," Torrico added.
Stark later acknowledged in a statement to the National Journal that he "got a little heated," but said Torrico was "itching for a fight.
This isn't the first time bizarre behavior has landed the 80-year-old incumbent in the news this cycle. He said during one debate that challenger Eric Swalwell accepted "hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes" without providing evidence to back his claim. He also falsely accused San Francisco Chronicle columnist Debra Saunders of contributing to his rival's campaign.
Editor's note: This post was updated at 4:37 p.m. with a comment from Stark.