September 4th, 2010
11:57 AM ET
4 years ago

Brewer walks back beheadings claim

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer on Friday walked back her claim that there have been beheadings in the Arizona desert.
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer on Friday walked back her claim that there have been beheadings in the Arizona desert.

(CNN) – After standing by her claim for more than two months that there have been beheadings in the Arizona desert as a result of rampant illegal immigration, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer on Friday walked back her controversial statement.

"That was an error, if I said that," Brewer told The Associated Press. "I misspoke, but you know, let me be clear, I am concerned about the border region because it continues to be reported in Mexico that there's a lot of violence going on and we don't want that going into Arizona."

Brewer first mentioned beheadings in June, when her state’s controversial new immigration law piqued the national interest. Four in ten Americans opposed the law that month, according to a CNN poll. Brewer cited violence–such as beheadings–near the border as grounds for signing such strict legislation.

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.


Filed under: 2010 • Arizona • Immigration • issues • Jan Brewer
soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. DAVE

    "There was an error IF I said that"??????
    How many recordingas are there and how many people heard you say that. Why can't slimy politicians say "I was wrong to have said it"?
    They have no credibility anyway, so just be honest for once and say, "I lied...what a surprise, I'm a politician and I lie for a living"??

    September 4, 2010 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  2. Richard T.

    What is that comment... "If I said that"? She said it. It is on video tape, the internet and national print medias.

    Why can't this wingnut incompetent acknowledge she said it and was wrong to say it. Even when flat out caught lying Brewer won't admit it. Being in "error" would have been satisfactory but "If I said that' is just as wrong headed. I the word of that Republican hero, Joe Wilson (R-SC) "You lie!"

    September 4, 2010 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  3. Jerrold

    "That was an error, if I said that," Brewer told The Associated Press. This woman has no ethics so it is not surprising that when she must acknowledge that she "misspoke" and this only happened because she tanked in the debate and in the interviews immediately there after that she does so by wiggling out of it. No class at all. People make mistakes and exaggerate all the time but it takes real guts to stand up and say "I was wrong". Jan Brewer is a piece of work. Arizona needs a gut check!

    September 4, 2010 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  4. Doc

    Dear Governor Brewer,

    This letter is meant to bring you up to date with the latest and greatest innovations in recording human history. They are called records, recording tape, digital recorders, etc.

    In other words there is no "if you said that" about this situation. You did say that and in my not so humble opinion you knew exactly what you were saying at the time. In other words you did not misspeak, you lied. Given your political background this does not suprise me. As a matter of fact it amazaes me that you did not try to scare the populations with images of mushroom clouds over the Arizona desert as a former high level member of your party did to get the citizenry behind your party's desire to invade Iraq.

    I too am very concerned about illegal immigration but you have yet to reconcile that concern with legal action that is in line with constitutional guidelines.

    Whatever you do, I would only request that you refrain from embellishing the truth so badly in what can only be seen as political gamesmanship.

    September 4, 2010 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  5. Frisky

    There are so many real problems in this country, and its sad politicians keep making them UP, just trying to go the quickest way to hate and fear, then offer the solution to their fake problem.

    September 4, 2010 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  6. NYC REPUB

    The facts show, let me repeat that.......The FACTS show that illegal immigration is at an all time LOW......It has been trending that way for 10 years.........
    The GOP are using this as a political football. Congress with the DEM majority has just pass a 600 million dollar bill to fund border security.
    Facts should count for something in our political discourse.

    September 4, 2010 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  7. tony

    Isn't it funny that when a public figure lie, it's merely "misspeak?"

    September 4, 2010 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  8. Rakkasan

    "That was an error, if I said that," Brewer told The Associated Press.

    What does she mean by "IF" she said that?

    So basically, she's saying that she doesn't have the competence to recognize that the woman in news video saying that "beheadings are occurring at our Arizona border" is her?

    Pathetic.

    September 4, 2010 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  9. john

    So she lied, what do you expect?

    September 4, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  10. Greg

    Disingenous justification at best. She knows full well that she pointedly lied to cause a stir and support for anti-illegal immigrant persecution

    September 4, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  11. Mike in Texas

    A lot of "misspeaking" from both parties. Usually it isn't misspeaking but rather just making things up to prop you up or shoot your opponents down. You would think with today's technology and 24/7 information people would be a bit more careful about what they say.

    Then again, it doesn't seem like there is enough calling out of people when do misspeak or just plain make things up.

    September 4, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  12. a in austin

    Another "I didn't mean to say that" republican. Sure she meant it – placing fear among the citizens in her state! Have another drink and cigarette while you ponder your next remark!

    September 4, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  13. Ron in California

    So what! AZ and America still have a huge immigration problem. Bt the way...Obama adn Biden "misspeak" everyday.

    September 4, 2010 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  14. Owen

    Why so many people can't stand politicians... "if I said that". What a joke

    September 4, 2010 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  15. Glad I don't live in Arizona

    How about that. Another politician who tries to minimize their lying by labeling it as "mispoke". This woman is sad. And her debating skill was embarrassing to witness. When will these type of people be thrown to the side.

    September 4, 2010 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  16. Mike in NYC

    She's just a few years (maybe months) early. Old-style Mesoamerican slicing and dicing is coming our way eventually.

    ... several of which boarder [sic] Mexico ... (as of 3:14 pm EDT)

    "Boarder"? Ugh.

    The magic of technology, unfortunately, will not redeem us from good old-fashioned human stupidity.

    September 4, 2010 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  17. rdepontb

    So, Gov. Brewer told a bald-face lie to help her get attention from that immigration bill. And held to the lie for over two months during her campaign for re-election. Should she pull out of that race? What should she do about that bill-was it built on baseless accusations in other ways as well?

    September 4, 2010 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  18. jeb bush

    she will win by a landslide................

    September 4, 2010 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  19. Valorie from Raleigh

    Ms. Brewer is a typical Republican. Repeat a lie long enough and you can convince other Republicans that it is true. I watched a political debate on C-Span and, to be honest, Ms.Brewer would never get my vote.

    September 4, 2010 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  20. kd

    The bigger story, over this silly election stunt by Brewer, was just how lost she was at her debate with the other Arizona governor candidates. Now she says she won't debate anymore.

    Too many politicians refuse to debate because we'll see them as the unprepared, unqualified, incompetents that they are.

    September 4, 2010 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  21. Aaron

    With the spillover from the carnage happening daily in Mexico, there were likely beheadings and many other atrocities commited in the desert. It's just a matter of time before the bodies start surfacing.

    September 4, 2010 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  22. ST

    Sometimes I get annoyed by the media but this time they made me like them so much, the way they have crucified Brewer. They have put her on the limelight and showed everyone that a person can lie but can't run and hide. Bravo media, you have done a brilliant job! Keep it up!

    September 4, 2010 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  23. paulbark

    She's good at taking pot shots at Obama. But, she is so flawed herself. What a doofus she is. Add to that, she's a liar. And now she's a chicken, afraid to debate. Better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it up and leave no doubt.

    Arizona should be embarrassed by her. But, given her right wing approach, that's all that matters. Competence, not so much.

    Remember, she couldn't even give her opening statement. She wasn't even responding to a question. She's pathetic.

    September 4, 2010 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  24. DENNA

    She lied, she retracted. It's as simple as that. The Rethugs have made this an art form. They spew lies and wait to see what sticks. Sarah Palin is the queen of this tactic and Ms. Brewer should have contacted Silly Sarah to see how to make it work. Hello 'Death Panel" lies. Some Tea Partiers still believe this nonsense.

    September 4, 2010 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  25. Ann

    Yeah, like we forgot the darling Obama.. "what I meant was.."

    This governor had the courage to address a tough topic - illegal immigration. Period. Maybe she was misinformed about this beheading story, maybe she exagerated in order to draw attention, so what? after learning about what they found in Mexico, who knows what is the truth..

    September 4, 2010 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
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