Given what the real terrorists did in Nairobi, you’d think the White House would restrain itself from this kind of rhetoric:

Senior White House adviser Dan Pfeiffer on Thursday compared Republican lawmakers to suicide bombers as the showdown over a possible government shutdown intensified.

“We are for cutting spending, we are for reforming our tax code, we are for reforming entitlements,” Mr. Pfeiffer told CNN’s Jake Tapper. “But what we are not for is negotiating with people who have a bomb strapped to their chest.”

Mr. Pfeiffer, 37, who was hospitalized twice this month for stroke-like symptoms, also compared the GOP to arsonists and kidnappers. He called Republicans’ bid to attach other priorities to a debt-ceiling bill “ransom demands.”

“It’s not a negotiation if I show up at your house and say give me everything inside or I’m going to burn it down,” Mr. Pfeiffer said.

Of course, the language is shocking. But is it really that removed from what President Obama has been saying for more than five years? Is it any different, really, from the remark I quoted last week by former speaker Nancy Pelosi addressing women at the Center for American Progress?

The White House and the Democrats refuse to treat Republicans as people who disagree on policy issues. Nowhere do they make room for a serious discussion of issues. They peddle hate and division in a disgraceful manner.

If there is not widespread revulsion for this kind of language, the United States is in serious trouble—all the more ironic since President Obama was elected in part because he was seen as a silver-tongued healer. Certainly, in a mature democracy, the public must be beginning to see through this kind of talk. Let's hope.