The intensity of Arizona Sheriff Clarence Dupnik’s initial opinion as to where the blame lay for the shooting of Rep Giffords took a lot of people by surprise.
Dupnik, who is in charge of investigating the shooting, told a press conference Saturday that political “atmosphere of hatred and bigotry” had contributed to the events and condemned that the state of Arizona was “a mecca for prejudice and bigotry.”
Yesterday on Fox News Megyn Kelly asked Dupnik why he thought the shooting incident occurred, the sheriff did not backtrack:
“There was a lot of vitriolic statements made on radio and TV… and some of the vitriol got a lot of people agitated,” the Sheriff said. His response appeared to be a thinly-veiled attack on various politicians, talking heads, and cable channels — including Fox News.
Kelly pressed him, gently, on whether he’d specifically uncovered evidence “that suggests the suspected killer was listening to radio and watching television, and was in any way inspired by what he saw?”
“There’s no doubt in my mind that when a number of people night and day try to inflame the public that there’s going to be some consequences from doing that,” Dupnik said.
Kelly made a point of acknowledging that Dupnik was a Democrat, and pushed him not merely on his opinion, but on the timeliness of it: “Some of our viewers might wonder why you are putting a political spin on this…and not just focused on uncovering the facts?”
“I’m not sure it has anything to do with politics,” Dupnik said. “[Today] we see one party block the attempts of another party,” he went on, in a seeming reference to the Republican party’s block of bills including the 9/11 First Responders Bill in 2010 while waiting for finalization for their tax deal — a move that Jon Stewart dubbed “Bros before Heroes.”
Kelly’s response: “Is it really the place of the Sheriff to stir the pot on either side?”
He said he’d leave it up to the viewers to decide. Video below.
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