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Sarah Palin has provided the world with her first extensive public remarks after the tragic shootings in Tucson, Arizona.

“America’s Enduring Strength”

The Corner provides the transcript:

Like millions of Americans I learned of the tragic events in Arizona on Saturday, and my heart broke for the innocent victims. No words can fill the hole left by the death of an innocent, but we do mourn for the victims’ families as we express our sympathy.

I agree with the sentiments shared yesterday at the beautiful Catholic mass held in honor of the victims. The mass will hopefully help begin a healing process for the families touched by this tragedy and for our country.

Our exceptional nation, so vibrant with ideas and the passionate exchange and debate of ideas, is a light to the rest of the world. Congresswoman Giffords and her constituents were exercising their right to exchange ideas that day, to celebrate our Republic’s core values and peacefully assemble to petition our government. It’s inexcusable and incomprehensible why a single evil man took the lives of peaceful citizens that day.

There is a bittersweet irony that the strength of the American spirit shines brightest in times of tragedy. We saw that in Arizona. We saw the tenacity of those clinging to life, the compassion of those who kept the victims alive, and the heroism of those who overpowered a deranged gunman.

Like many, I’ve spent the past few days reflecting on what happened and praying for guidance. After this shocking tragedy, I listened at first puzzled, then with concern, and now with sadness, to the irresponsible statements from people attempting to apportion blame for this terrible event.

President Reagan said, “We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.” Acts of monstrous criminality stand on their own. They begin and end with the criminals who commit them, not collectively with all the citizens of a state, not with those who listen to talk radio, not with maps of swing districts used by both sides of the aisle, not with law-abiding citizens who respectfully exercise their First Amendment rights at campaign rallies, not with those who proudly voted in the last election.

The last election was all about taking responsibility for our country’s future. President Obama and I may not agree on everything, but I know he would join me in affirming the health of our democratic process. Two years ago his party was victorious. Last November, the other party won. In both elections the will of the American people was heard, and the peaceful transition of power proved yet again the enduring strength of our Republic.

Vigorous and spirited public debates during elections are among our most cherished traditions.  And after the election, we shake hands and get back to work, and often both sides find common ground back in D.C. and elsewhere. If you don’t like a person’s vision for the country, you’re free to debate that vision. If you don’t like their ideas, you’re free to propose better ideas. But, especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn. That is reprehensible.

There are those who claim political rhetoric is to blame for the despicable act of this deranged, apparently apolitical criminal. And they claim political debate has somehow gotten more heated just recently. But when was it less heated? Back in those “calm days” when political figures literally settled their differences with dueling pistols? In an ideal world all discourse would be civil and all disagreements cordial. But our Founding Fathers knew they weren’t designing a system for perfect men and women. If men and women were angels, there would be no need for government. Our Founders’ genius was to design a system that helped settle the inevitable conflicts caused by our imperfect passions in civil ways. So, we must condemn violence if our Republic is to endure.

As I said while campaigning for others last March in Arizona during a very heated primary race, “We know violence isn’t the answer. When we ‘take up our arms’, we’re talking about our vote.” Yes, our debates are full of passion, but we settle our political differences respectfully at the ballot box – as we did just two months ago, and as our Republic enables us to do again in the next election, and the next. That’s who we are as Americans and how we were meant to be. Public discourse and debate isn’t a sign of crisis, but of our enduring strength. It is part of why America is exceptional.

No one should be deterred from speaking up and speaking out in peaceful dissent, and we certainly must not be deterred by those who embrace evil and call it good. And we will not be stopped from celebrating the greatness of our country and our foundational freedoms by those who mock its greatness by being intolerant of differing opinion and seeking to muzzle dissent with shrill cries of imagined insults.

Just days before she was shot, Congresswoman Giffords read the First Amendment on the floor of the House. It was a beautiful moment and more than simply “symbolic,” as some claim, to have the Constitution read by our Congress. I am confident she knew that reading our sacred charter of liberty was more than just “symbolic.” But less than a week after Congresswoman Giffords reaffirmed our protected freedoms, another member of Congress announced that he would propose a law that would criminalize speech he found offensive.

It is in the hour when our values are challenged that we must remain resolved to protect those values. Recall how the events of 9-11 challenged our values and we had to fight the tendency to trade our freedoms for perceived security. And so it is today.

Let us honor those precious lives cut short in Tucson by praying for them and their families and by cherishing their memories. Let us pray for the full recovery of the wounded. And let us pray for our country. In times like this we need God’s guidance and the peace He provides. We need strength to not let the random acts of a criminal turn us against ourselves, or weaken our solid foundation, or provide a pretext to stifle debate.

America must be stronger than the evil we saw displayed last week. We are better than the mindless finger-pointing we endured in the wake of the tragedy. We will come out of this stronger and more united in our desire to peacefully engage in the great debates of our time, to respectfully embrace our differences in a positive manner, and to unite in the knowledge that, though our ideas may be different, we must all strive for a better future for our country. May God bless America.

Compassionate and not too harsh on the liberal media. Overall, I thought it was a great speech and displayed what you should expect from a person of character. Bravo.

Coming up next… President Obama’s remarks. Good luck.

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Wonder what you would find if you frisked some of the Democrat groups out there?

Answer: They are using Saturday’s shooting as a fundraising tool.

This is absolutely appalling. Warner Todd Huston – from Big Government – reports:

An extreme, left-wing Democrat group calling itself 21st Century Democrats has had the gall to send out an email blast using as a fundraising tool Saturday’s criminal shooting of Representative Gabrielle Giffords in Arizona. Judge John Roll and four others were killed in the incident, one of them a 9-year-old girl, but these Democrats are ignorant enough to be using this incident to try and squeeze donations from its supporters. Some might think the action of 21st Century Democrats is itself a crime — a crime against decency.

The email blast sent out Sunday morning to its supporters tells members that “we don’t know yet” why Jared Loughner shot Gabrielle Giffords but goes on to lay the blame on Sarah Palin and Gifford’s opponent in the past election for using “violent imagery” in his campaign.

The email goes on to ask members to “join us in sharing your thoughts and prayers to the Congresswoman and her family by visiting our website where we have set up a page for you to do so.” Naturally once you click on the link you are taken to a page that prominently displays the group’s DONATE NOW button. It is not in the slightest way discreetly designed. As soon as you go to this so-called prayers page you see a large button asking for donations and another one underneath it urging visitors to “sign up” for email blasts and information.

Disgustingly, 21st Century Democrats is using this crime in a fundraising effort.

Don’t believe it? Here’s a screenshot just in case the group decides to scrub it off their website:

Click here to view full image.

This group has no decency.

I suppose they are just following in the footsteps of former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, because they are, in his words, not letting a serious crisis to go to waste. Unfortunately, if this group isn’t doing it then others sure are. According to Politico, some Democrats plotted to blame the Tea Party patriots for Saturday’s horrific shooting in Tucson, Arizona:

One veteran Democratic operative, who blames overheated rhetoric for the shooting, said President Barack Obama should carefully but forcefully do what his predecessor did.

“They need to deftly pin this on the tea partiers,” said the Democrat. “Just like the Clinton White House deftly pinned the Oklahoma City bombing on the militia and anti-government people.”

Unfortunately for the Democrats, apart from being incredibly insane, all of the evidence is pointing to the fact that Jared Loughner – the shooter – was more left in his political ideology.

*UPDATE* – January 11, 2011 – 10:45 PM.

What is wrong with Democrats? The Weekly Standard reports:

This afternoon Sanders sent out a fundraising appeal, seeking to raise money to fight Republicans and other “right-wing reactionaries” responsible for the climate that led to the shooting.

He writes:

Given the recent tragedy in Arizona, as well as the start of the new Congress, I wanted to take this opportunity to share a few words with political friends in Vermont and throughout the country.  I also want to thank the very many supporters who have begun contributing online to my 2012 reelection campaign at www.bernie.org.  There is no question but that the Republican Party, big money corporate interests and right-wing organizations will vigorously oppose me.  Your financial support now and in the future is much appreciated.

Despicable.

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Wonder what you would find if you frisked the liberal mainstream media and their coverage of the Rep. Giffords shooting?

Answer: They cannot resist the urge to use tragedies in order to play politics.

First, click here to see some of the crucial facts that the liberal mainstream media has been ignoring.

In my blog post yesterday, I mentioned that it comes as no surprise that the liberal mainstream and others from the Left are trying to use this tragic event to play politics. Those who are blaming this horrible event on Sarah Palin, the Tea Party, Fox News, the Republican Party, and other conservative political identities are immature and irresponsible.

What’s the reason for all of this? Glenn Reynolds – from The Wall Street Journal – elaborates:

Shortly after November’s electoral defeat for the Democrats, pollster Mark Penn appeared on Chris Matthews’s TV show and remarked that what President Obama needed to reconnect with the American people was another Oklahoma City bombing. To judge from the reaction to Saturday’s tragic shootings in Arizona, many on the left (and in the press) agree, and for a while hoped that Jared Lee Loughner’s killing spree might fill the bill.

With only the barest outline of events available, pundits and reporters seemed to agree that the massacre had to be the fault of the tea party movement in general, and of Sarah Palin in particular. Why? Because they had created, in New York Times columnist Paul Krugman’s words, a “climate of hate.”

[...]

To be clear, if you’re using this event to criticize the “rhetoric” of Mrs. Palin or others with whom you disagree, then you’re either: (a) asserting a connection between the “rhetoric” and the shooting, which based on evidence to date would be what we call a vicious lie; or (b) you’re not, in which case you’re just seizing on a tragedy to try to score unrelated political points, which is contemptible. Which is it?

I understand the desperation that Democrats must feel after taking a historic beating in the midterm elections and seeing the popularity of ObamaCare plummet while voters flee the party in droves. But those who purport to care about the health of our political community demonstrate precious little actual concern for America’s political well-being when they seize on any pretext, however flimsy, to call their political opponents accomplices to murder.

Where is the decency in that?

I believe the last paragraph says it loud and clear. The Left is so frustrated that they cannot find any hardcore evidence against the Tea Party movement in order to use it against them and discredit their political ideology – plain and simple. Therefore, we can only expect a lot more garbage and nonsense to spew out of the enormous megaphone known as the liberal mainstream media. Heck, it has already started.

Here are some of the liberals who are trying to play politics with this tragic story (this list will be constantly updated):

Expect this list to grow quickly…

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Wonder what you would find if you frisked a grocery store in Tucson, AZ?

Answer: U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona and at least 18 others were shot.

FOX News reports:

Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords is in critical condition after being shot in the head at close range  Saturday morning while holding a public event, Fox News has confirmed.

Initial reports said that Giffords had died but a hospital spokesman and three House sources told Fox News that she remained alive in a nearby hospital where she was undergoing surgery.

At least 19 people were shot at Gifford’s “Your Corner” event held outside a Safeway grocery store in Tucson, including three members of the Democratic congresswoman’s staff in Arizona. Five have died, including one of Gifford’s aides, and nine are in critical condition at the University of Arizona Medical Center.

A suspect is in custody. Authorities are looking for a possible second suspect.

Arizona state Sen. Linda Lopez, who is a friend of Giffords, told Fox News that Giffords is responding to commands and that she’s confident that she will survive surgery. But she’s sure what her long term prognosis is.

This is absolutely horrible. More to come…

*UPDATE* – January 8, 2011 – 4:16 PM

The shooter was a 22 year-old, white male. Fox News believes they have the name of the suspect but are not releasing the name until it has been confirmed.

Also, there have been multiple reports about a second suspect being arrested. More to come…

*UPDATE* – January 8, 2011 – 4:43 PM

The shooter has been identified as Jared Loughner. Here is his video that the News is taking his quotes from:

More to come…

*UPDATE* – January 8, 2011 – 5:25 PM.

Federal Judge John Roll was killed during a shooting. CBS News reports:

Appointed by President George H.W. Bush in 1991, Federal Judge John McCarthy Roll was shot and killed today when an assailant opened fire in a Safeway parking lot in Ariz., where Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz. was meeting with constituents.

More to come…

*UPDATE* – January 8, 2011 – 6:29 PM.

More photos have been released of the suspected gunman, Jared Loughner. More to come…

*UPDATE* – January 8, 2011 – 6:57 PM.

It comes as no surprise that the liberal mainstream and others from the Left are trying to use this tragic event to play politics. Those who are blaming this horrible event on Sarah Palin, the Tea Party, Fox News, the Republican Party, and other conservative political identities are immature and irresponsible.

Liberals who are trying to play politics with this tragic story (this list is constantly updated):

I’m quite confident more garbage like this will be popping up this weekend. More to come…

*UPDATE* – January 8, 2011 – 7:26 PM.

The Business Insider reports:

A woman named Caitie Parker has been tweeting that she went to school with Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ alleged shooter Jared Loughner and that he had met Giffords previously.

Also,” he was a pot head & into rock like Hendrix,The Doors, Anti-Flag. I haven’t seen him in person since ’07 in a sign language class” and “As I knew him he was left wing, quite liberal. & oddly obsessed with the 2012 prophecy.”

More to come…

*UPDATE* – January 8, 2011 – 7:31 PM.

Apparently the Safeway massacare shooter, Jared Loughner, loved the books Mein Kampf and the Communist Maniefesto. The Daily Caller reports:

Jared Lee Loughner, the man believed responsible for the shooting of Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and the murder of at least five others Saturday, left his MySpace friends a “goodbye” before his page was apparently taken down.

His YouTube page, in which he lists both The Communist Manifesto and Mein Kampf among his favorite books, is still operational. Incidentally, Congresswoman Giffords is Jewish.

More to come…

*UPDATE* – January 8, 2011 – 9:06 PM.

Hot Air reports:

There’s one other video on Loughner’s YouTube page — not a clip that he created, but one created by someone else which he “favorited.” It’s of a flag-burning.

I don’t know about you, but I find this video really freaky…

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