September 2nd, 2010
12:41 PM ET
4 years ago

Brewer takes heat for not addressing beheading claim

A frustrated Brewer wouldn't answer reporter's questions about her beheading statement.
A frustrated Brewer wouldn't answer reporter's questions about her beheading statement.

(CNN) - Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer sparred with her Democratic opponent in an at-times contentious debate Wednesday night, but it was what the Arizona Republican didn't say that is making waves the day after.

Brewer - who has become a prominent leader in the fight against illegal immigration with her steadfast support of Arizona's controversial immigration law - wouldn't address statements she made earlier this summer suggesting illegal immigrants are responsible for beheadings in the Arizona desert.

"What is hurting us right now economically are statements, false statements made by Jan Brewer, about how Arizona has become so violent, that we are a place of fear, and we have beheadings in the dessert," said Arizona Attorney Gen. Terry Goddard, the Democrat challenging Brewer, during the debate.

Quickly changing the subject, Brewer refused to address Goddard's injection of the beheading comment - a statement for which she has previously taken heat because it appeared proof was lacking that any beheadings ever occured. When reporters peppered her with more questions about the statement after the debate, Brewer immediately exited the room, saying, "Ok, thank you all."

The comment in question came in June, amidst national fury the state's new immigration law was overly severe and facilitated racial profiling.

"Our law enforcement agencies have found bodies in the desert either buried or just lying out there that have been beheaded," she told reporters as part of her argument that the law was vital for public safety reasons.

Medical examiners from six of Arizona's counties, several of which boarder Mexico later told the Arizona Guardian that they had never witnessed victims who had been beheaded.

Brewer's office never clarified the basis for her beheading statement.

Brewer is also facing criticism Thursday for her opening statement in the debate, during which she appeared to lose focus several times.


Filed under: Arizona • issues • Jan Brewer
soundoff (285 Responses)
  1. MichaelK

    This is where the fight for good governance is won. Hooray for the opposition and the press for exposing her lies and demanding facts.

    September 2, 2010 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  2. Damien

    The GOP, with their lies and fear mongering, know no bounds.

    September 2, 2010 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  3. Willa-PA

    People voting for the likes of Brewer, Miller, Angle, Paul with the help of Palin get what they deserve if these people get voting in. Cutting of benefits, Social Security, Medicare, disability bnfts, unemployment bnfts, education etc. etc. and listin to Glen Beck and the FOX nonews etc. etc. Becareful what you wish for. It has only been 17 months for this president to turn things around from the eight years that brought us to this point.

    " Learn the art of patience. Apply discipline to your thoughts when they become anxious over the outcome of a goal. Impatience breeds anxiety, fear, discouragement and failure. Patience creates confidence, decisiveness and a rational outlook, which eventually leads to success.

    ~ Brian Adams

    September 2, 2010 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  4. johnrj08

    Brewer has gone through the same political metamorphosis that John McCain went through during his recent primary in order to appeal to the most extreme voters in that state. It is my understanding that Brewer's governing style has entirely changed since her signing of SB 1070. Like McCain, her earlier positions were more moderate and reasonable. Now, she appears to have decided that it is more important to get re-elected than it is to be an honest, deliberative leader of her state. These people are not enlightened leaders. They're nothing more than political survivalists who pander to whomever they have to in order to keep their jobs.

    September 2, 2010 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  5. mort

    beheadings in the dessert?! sounds delicious!

    September 2, 2010 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  6. montag

    "debate, during which she appeared to lose focus several times."

    Appeared to lose focus? Hah! She was clueless – completely lost. How could anyone in Arizona even consider voting for this woman? Are they putting something in the water down there? Or is it that the extreme heat has fried their brains?

    September 2, 2010 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  7. beth

    Hey she's being investigated for staffers of hers being affiliated with privately owned prisons...where they plan on sending illegals they take...what a sleeze...and now she's withdrawaling her ads from the CBS affiliate who's responsible for the investigation...

    yeah, tea partiers....can't wait 'til they're all found out.

    September 2, 2010 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  8. Daaa

    What do the Republicans have besides fear to campaign on. They are allergic to facts and constructive ideas and even patriotism.

    September 2, 2010 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  9. Dave

    Why do republicans have such a hard time telling the truth?

    September 2, 2010 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  10. Willa-PA

    She is also linked to the largest prison system in AZ who lobbied for her and assisted her in getting this new immigration law passed. Lots of dollars would be involved, the more illigal prisoners the better for her.

    September 2, 2010 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  11. Dan

    That 'Old Bat' doesn't even have a head to take off. The Arizona economy will look like the Great Depression when she gets done ruining the demographics of a Latino based population.

    September 2, 2010 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  12. Unit34AHunt

    Brewer won that debate handily. I don't know what CNN is reading to imagine that the Governor is suffering from any presumed gaffes. Today's polling shows that Arizonans are overwhelmingly likely to elect her rather than Terry Goddard.

    September 2, 2010 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  13. Ben Ben

    Another lying fear mongering Republican.

    September 2, 2010 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  14. Da Professor

    Now lets not expect too much from Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer who is, afterall, a Republican.

    Lying, hypocrisy, and ignoring of facts are just the norm for these fools. You do remember the "Palin – Bachman Death Panels?

    As long as the right wing extremists control the Republican Party and the Tea Party, there will be a steady diet of lies, deceit, arrogance, hypocrisy, and wars to discover the non-existent weapons of mass destruction.

    September 2, 2010 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  15. Roscoe

    Brewer is an absolute idiot. We in AZ are very unlucky that she found her way to office. But, she's running a fear campaign that is going to work. She's failed to work the budget, she's sold off state property for a short term cash injection, and she's supported raising taxes.

    September 2, 2010 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  16. Mr. Moderate

    Yet another tea party darling running from the media. Hey Brewer, Palin, Paul, the "lamestream" media ploy can only take you so far. If you are a leader, you will speak to them and demonstrate your intellect (unless you can't and are a one trick pony).

    September 2, 2010 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  17. Shari from Madison WI

    Well, hopefully people will now see how unqualified this woman is to be in politics. She either lies and tries to cover up her lies, or she is insane and really believes that everything she says and does is correct and honest. If she's really insane she needs to step down from office and check herself into a mental health hospital for help.

    September 2, 2010 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  18. Roscoe

    Oh, and her father died fighting Nazi's in California in the mid 1950's.

    September 2, 2010 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  19. Darla (Edmonton, Canada)

    Governor Brewer appears to be corrupt. Just watch Rachel Maddow's report from last night on her ties to a private detention/security corporation and SB 1070. There's a stink rising from Phoenix and its from the bullsh*t Governor Brewer is spewing.

    September 2, 2010 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  20. BudInTexas

    Another crazy GOTParty loon!

    September 2, 2010 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  21. Buddy

    I'm for fighting illegal immigration.

    But Brewer is a moron... Why do politicians lie in this day and age , when it takes seconds to find out the truth ?

    September 2, 2010 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  22. Michael R

    The same points were made earlier this summer when she made those comments to raise the fear level and get more support for SB1070. The media knew it was false then, mentioned it once or twice and forgot about it. It will be a non-story until the next debate, if there is one.

    September 2, 2010 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  23. carlos

    freaking coward witch.....vote her out.....just inciting violence.........latino voters in arizona and in the U.S.of A., we are counting on your vote against this infamous people........she is the epitome of devil

    September 2, 2010 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  24. Byrd

    Perhaps Brewer was referring to her own apparent frontal lobotomy.

    September 2, 2010 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  25. groovygoober

    "It has only been 17 months for this president to turn things around from the eight years that brought us to this point."

    Say what????? Good lord, someone call the police because this idiot is on some serious drugs....

    September 2, 2010 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
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