(CNN) – In her first interview since the Arizona shootings, Sarah Palin Monday sharply beat back critics who have suggested her at-times charged political rhetoric and use of a graphic featuring crosshairs may have contributed to the shooter’s motivations.
"The graphic that was used was crosshairs. That's not original. Democrats have been using them for years," Palin said in the interview with Sean Hannity on Fox News, where Palin is a paid contributor.
"For many years maps in political races have been used to target certain districts that people would feel that they can get into those districts and find someone to whom they believe would represent the constituents' will better than the incumbent," she added.
The map in question – created by Palin's political action committee last spring - featured the crosshairs of a gun over the congressional districts of 20 Democratic candidates – including that of Gabrielle Giffords, the congresswoman who was shot in Tucson nine days ago. Last week, Palin aide Rebecca Monsour defended the graphic, saying the crosshairs were not those of a gun but rather "a surveyor symbol."
But Palin's PAC quickly scrubbed the graphic from its website after the shootings, a move Palin said she found appropriate.
"The contract graphic artist did take it down and I don't think that was inappropriate," said Palin. "If it was going to cause much heartburn and even more controversy I didn’t have a problem with it taken down."
In the 30 minute interview, Palin also addressed the criticism she has faced for her video response to the shootings posted last week on Facebook. Critics particularly took issue with the former governor's use of the term "blood libel," a phrase that for many conjures anti-semetic connotations.
"Blood libel obviously means being falsely accused of having blood on your hands. In this case, that's exactly what was going on," she said, adding later, "Just two days before an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal had that term in its title. And that term has been used for eons."
The phrase, which traditionally refers to a long-standing anti-Semitic myth that Jews murder children for religious rituals, drew fire from the Anti-Defamation League and others. But Palin insisted critics were taking issue with the phrasing in hopes of derailing her overall message.
"It isn't about me personally, but it is about the message," she said. "I know that a lot on the left hate my message, and they will do all that they can to stop me because they don't like the message. They’ll do what they can to destroy the message and the messenger."
Meanwhile, when asked about speculation the recent controversies have disrupted any future political ambitions, Palin vowed she will continue to speak her mind.
"I am not ready to make an announcement about what my political future is going to be. But I will tell you ... I am not going to sit down. I am not going to shut up,"she said.
Palin won't shut up. In other news, fire hot, sky blue.
I suppose she can cite specifics of those others who have been using cross-hairs for "years", yes? Ooops.
The woman is as disingenuous as she is ignorant.
Thank you Sarah! You have more testosterone than most of the men in Washington today! I Love reading all of the haters on posts like this, who try to call you ignorant, etc. They show themselves to be imbeciles, who allow others to do their thinking! Blessings to you~!
I can only hope that Mrs. Palin keeps blubbering on. However, from the beginning of the tragedy in Tucson, I never did associate her crazy talk with the subsequent violence. I do think her rantings over the last several years ultimately reveal her lack of class, lack of education and show her to be a loose cannon. The people of Alaska should be glad she quit. She is now only a "rich" Alaskan embarrassment.
No doubt she won't shut up but when will she have something to say?
Please Sarah, don't shut up. But for God's sake, stop lying and start telling the truth.
Good, please keep in talking,Sarah! President Obama 2012!!!!!!!!!
it's great to hear how sorry she is! she's rude, arrogant, and an intellectual lightweight. she can talk all she wants, but some of us have stopped listening!
Wow! Gov. Sarah Palin was gorgeous on 'Hannity' tonight. She was bold, brilliant, beautiiful. She crushed her critics & delighted her devotees. What a woman!
I was all set to write a scathing response to the latest pile of verbal manure spouted by this idiot, but realized that she IS NOT WORTH the effort. Her words are as empty as her heart and her head. She adds NOTHING to our national discourse, and adds NOTHING in the way of solutions to the problems we face. She cares only for herself. She is best ignored, and from now on that is exactly what I intend to do
Will somebody PLEASE make this idiotic, uneducated, ignorant woman GO AWAY????
She won't sit down and shut up as long as we read her BS. To me, it's like watching Britney Spears. It's hard to not watch a crazy person. Odd people will always draw our attention especially when they are so stupid and so many worship their stupidity!
....and you don't have to. You will be ignored and dismissed and we will continue to call you out and laugh at your stupidity.
If she won't shut up, the least CNN and other media could do is NOT COVER HER. She is not going to win as a presidential candidate.
So now she's a martyr? Ha! Please come down off that cross and quit being phony. Still, you are being selfish. There are still 6 dead victims and many more wounded ones. Every time she opens her mouth, her hoof goes into it. Sara, you are not a martyr. This time is the time for victims and their families to sort out their feelings, not hear your rhetorical bs, and irritating voice talking about you. Unfortunately, due to your undiagnosed personality disorder, you don't take heed from people's reactions. You only see people's rejection of your twisted ideals as a reason to get louder and march on, though in vain.
Like we really believed she'd ever fade away into the sunset? We can't be that lucky!
Sarah Palin is not presidential material
She doesn't have to shut up but she should.
message? Palin has no message. Look at who she was when she represented Wasilla and when she was first governor of Alaska – then in one day as a VP candidate, all her morals went out the window. Greedy, sycophantic hypocrite is an apt description.
As someone that's not a Democrat or Republican and who lives in Arizona. I wish this woman would just go away. (Don't go away mad Sarah, Just GO AWAY). When will this woman realize that people across the country and especially here in Arizona got dismayed by her comments because it's not about her, her speeches, her critics or even her web page. It's about the people that were wounded and killed on a horrific day, especially a 9 year old child who had her whole life ahead of her. "THAT'S IT". Nothing else, this woman appears to be completely clueless. For those that think the Dems are scared of this woman. Lets just say at this point she would lose the state of Arizona, and this state hasn't gone blue in as long as I can remember.
And I'm still not going to take you serious!!!!
Sounds like more lies from the Half Gov. Palin. These have been used for years by the Dems she says. If that's the case it should be very easy for her to show us one of those maps, just one, please. One thing is for sure, don't hold your breath until she shows one cause it'll be a long wait. But that's what the new GOP does, tell lies over and over again until people believe it's the truth. But a lie is always a lie.
Please Sarah.......Let the real press interview you on live TV. Call a press conference for/witg reporters from all walks of life Maybe then, the country will see what you are really about. Come out of your shell.
Please. Keep speaking Mrs. Palin. The more you speak, the more the Nation sees what a foolish person you are. By election time, you should be virtually irrelevant.
She is very attractive....until she talks