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Obama Makes Statement on Rep. Gabrielle Giffords

President Obama this afternoon appeared briefly in the State Dining Room to make remarks on the shooting today of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) and others at a town hall meeting Giffords was hosting in her district.

Giffords was shot in the head and is in critical condition, but it appears she will recover. Six others shot at the event have died.

Here is the pool report describing Obama’s statement:

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords is battling for her life in an Arizona hospital, POTUS said during three minute speech in the White House’s state dining room.

POTUS began his remarks at 4:46 p.m., wearing a dark blue suit, dark tie and speaking under the portrait of former President Abraham Lincoln, who was assassinated on April 14, 1865. “We are still assembling the facts,” POTUS said.

“It’s not surprising today Gabby was doing what she always does,” he said, “Listening to hopes and concerns of her neighbors. That is the essence of what our democracy is all about. That is why this is more than a tragedy for those involved. It is a tragedy for Arizona and a tragedy for our entire country.”

POTUS learned of the shooting from John Brennan and Jim Messina a little after 1:20pm Eastern, per a White House backgrounder. He has since spoken with Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, House Democratic and Republican leaders. FBI Director Mueller has been dispatched to Arizona under POTUS’s direction, POTUS said.

“Gabby Giffords was a friend of mine,” he said. “She was not only an extraordinary public servant, but she is also somebody who is warm and caring she is well liked by her colleagues and well liked by her constituents.”

POTUS, who read his remarks from paper, noted that at least five have died – including a girl barely 9-years-old and federal Judge John Roll.

“What Americans do in times of tragedy is to come together and support each other,” POTUS said. “I know gabby is as tough as they come and I’m hopeful she’s going to pull through”

11 Responses to Obama Makes Statement on Rep. Gabrielle Giffords

  1. Why does he always ram Michelle into his remarks? She has nothing to do with this. The few brief moments that BO spent in Washington, D.C., when he was a Senator were without Michelle. She stayed home and raked in $300,000/yr for being his wife.

    I pray if tragedy ever strikes my family I am spared the mental image of BOO and MOO presiding over my situation with their synthetic sympathy.

  2. A horrible event, so many injured and dead. MrsGiffords and so many of the injured will not ‘recover’, they will be forever scarred, perhaps disabled and a disturbed young man will be tried and executed.
    MrsGiffords father was quoted as saying her enemies were “the Tea Party” and the Net is abuzz with accusations toward conservative pundits, FOX network and MrsPalin, et all, of inciting this tragedy.

    The word “enemies” thrown about by our President and by political opponents has lost the true meaning and become a label for any who disagree with the stated agenda of the speaker. Name calling, casting aspersions and downright hatred is destroying our political climate. But, none of these words caused the shooting today in Tucson, it was the disturbed thinking of a troubled man.

  3. Why do these politicians always say killings are senseless and words like that…of course, they are. I would prefer an expression such as “we will never know what led this troubled man to do something so horrible and disgusting.”

  4. Also, I hate to be cynical, but Rep Giffords is descibed as a fighter… Has anyone ever gotten hurt and the papers said, “X is such an unmotivated, passive sort that his ability to hang onto life is in question”?

  5. Why do the dangerous mentally ill have the right to walk freely among us, making lives hell with their sickness and having the right to inflict their illness on the healthy until the day the ill person murders someone?

    I have had personal contact with TWO cases in which a person was acknowledged to be mentally ill and dangerous, but their “rights” overwhelmed the rights of those around them. One went to a mall and opened fire on shoppers. The other murdered his father, my friend, with a knife attack.

    Why won’t someone in power address this situation. Is it PC to pretend that the dangerous are not dangerous? Is it saving money to fail to provide long-term residential care? So a few murder trials are cheaper than protecting innocent citizens?