The Sheriff of Pima County, Clarence Dupnik, a Democrat, claimed that the shooting was the result of “vitriol” in the political environment. He pointed his finger of blame at the Republican Party for “trying to block the attempts of another party to make this a better country.” Of course, Dupnik did not have any evidence to substantiate his allegations.
Liberal commentator and economist Paul Krugman claimed that the incident was caused by "the rhetoric of Beck, Limbaugh, etc." He also predicted that the comments of conservative commentators would lead to "the violence I fear we're going to see in the months and years ahead." U.S. Congressman Bill Pascrell (D-NJ) blamed Fox News for the shooting and said that the network feeds “an aura of hate” that exists in the country today. Pascrell blamed a network that had interviewed him 159 times in the past few years.
Keith Olbermann of MSNBC linked the tragedy to Sarah Palin for targeting Giffords and other Democrats for defeat and using a map with cross hairs over her district. Yet, Democrats have often used the same sort of imagery for political contests.
Too bad the facts do not coincide with this liberal fantasy. Loughner made no references to Fox News, Sarah Palin, media personalities, the GOP or the tea party in his numerous online postings. While some left wing sites posted a phony voter registration card purporting to show Loughner as a registered Republican, he was not a member of the GOP. This morning, Chris Roads, the Registrar of Voters in Pima County verified that Loughner is a registered Independent.
Far from being a Republican, Loughner was “more left” according to his former classmate and band member Caitie Parker. She said that Loughner was a “pothead” who was “left wing, quite liberal.” Few left wingers are members of the Tea Party. According to the local tea party organization in Tucson, Loughner was not involved in their group, nor was he involved in the campaign of Giffords’ Republican challenger.
Among his favorite books were “Mein Kampf” and “The Communist Manifesto,” not exactly the reading of conservatives. If Loughner was a crazed conservative, how come his first victim was a federal judge appointed by Republican President George H. W. Bush? He was clearly motivated by insanity and not politics. This freak was so deranged that his college classmates had worried he might pull out a gun and start shooting. His real interests included mind control and the power of words. To show his true freakishness, Loughner built an occult shrine in his back yard that included a human skull.
Despite the overwhelming evidence about Loughner, many Democrats tried to score political points out of this tragedy. It took Democrats less than 30 minutes to start casting blame on the GOP. It was so bad that liberal commentator Juan Williams said that some “on the left are taking cheap shots.” According to Williams, the goal was "to try to keep Republicans on the defensive. In all honesty, I don't see any direct connection between any Republican group and this shooter ... who is a psycho nut-job."
Peter Wehner of the Ethic and Public Policy Center, described the liberal attack machine as “sickening.” He said that “people were taking a terrible human tragedy and using it as a political club, and there wasn’t even a moratorium of 24 hours, or even 24 minutes."
Isn’t it interesting how the media and the left are treating this incident compared to the Fort Hood shooting last year. In 2009, Major Nidal Malik Hassan, a Muslim extremist, killed 13 officers in a religious rampage. At that time, the media cautioned against a rush to judgment. This time they are not following that advice. Instead, it is an unseemly opportunity to push for gun control legislation and bash conservatives. The tragedy in Arizona has been compounded by a disgusting display of politics at its worse.
Jeff Crouere is a native of New Orleans, LA and he is the host of a Louisiana based program, “Ringside Politics,” which airs at 7:30 p.m. Fri.. and 10:00 p.m. Sun. on WLAE-TV 32, a PBS station, and 7 till 11 a.m.weekdays on WGSO 990 AM in New Orleans and the Northshore. For more information, visit his web site at www.ringsidepolitics.com. E-mail him at [email protected].