March 25th, 2010
04:42 PM ET
13 years ago

Palin 'has been vocal about condemning violence,' aide says

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="An image on Sarah Palin's Facebook page featuring crosshairs on certain Democratic districts is causing an uproar ."]Washington (CNN) - Sarah Palin's team is fighting back against some Democratic claims that the former Alaska governor is encouraging threats of violence against members of Congress who voted in favor of health care reform.

Democratic officials and liberal Web sites are upset that Palin used an image of crosshairs in a Facebook post this week listing 20 vulnerable Democrats who voted for the legislation. She plans to target them this election year with money from her political action committee.

One House member mentioned the Facebook posting during a Wednesday meeting on safety concerns, a Democratic source told CNN's Dana Bash. Mention of the map brought audible groans to the room, the source said.

Democratic National Committee chairman Tim Kaine released a sharply-worded statement Wednesday night accusing several Republican leaders, including Palin, of inciting dangerous behavior.

"Republican leaders are themselves engaging in actions and rhetoric that previously would have been limited to fringe elements of the Republican Party," Kaine said. "Sarah Palin has invoked health care 'death panels' and has now placed gun sights on 20 Members of Congress who supported reform."

An adviser to Palin responded by pointing to several instances in which the former Alaska governor has urged supporters to focus their energies on civil debate and action at the ballot box - not extremist activities.

"We are now the keepers of an honorable tradition of conservative values and good works," Palin said at the national Tea Party Convention in Nashville last month. "We must never forget that it is a sacred trust to carry these ideas forward. It demands civility and it requires decent, constructive, issue-oriented debate."

The adviser also noted that Palin spoke out last year after the murder of abortion provider George Tiller in Kansas, writing on her PAC Web site that "violence is never an answer in advancing the pro-life message."

"Its good that she finally agrees with the Democrats on something," the adviser told CNN. "[House Majority Whip] Jim Clyburn said that silence equals consent, and in this matter she agrees, which is why she has been vocal about condemning violence."

Sen. John McCain, who tapped Palin as his running mate during his 2008 presidential bid, defended Palin's Facebook posting on NBC's "Today Show" Thursday.

"I have seen the rhetoric of targeted districts as long as I've been in politics, please," McCain said. "Any threat of violence is terrible but to say there that there is a targeted district or that we reload or go back into the fight again, please, those are fine, they are used all the time."

Filed under: Popular Posts • Sarah Palin
soundoff (266 Responses)
  1. South

    You go Sarah................All the way to the WH next time.

    March 25, 2010 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  2. Alban

    The democrats in Congress kick the crap out of 300 million Americans with their bogus health care bill, a very few angry Americans strike back by cussing at those democrats, and they have the gall to cry foul. What a bunch of hypocrites.

    March 25, 2010 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  3. michael

    so liberal websites are in an uproar that palin has a picture of political opponents in the sights of a scope, which is obviously a metaphor (a somewhat tired metaphor at this point, i might ad), but they feel no need to criticize sean penn for saying that people who don't agree with him should "die screaming of rectal cancer"?

    March 25, 2010 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  4. jane in wi

    this woman continues to show her true lack of intelligence. it is probably the media's fault.....

    March 25, 2010 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  5. Obama 2012

    Oh my!!!...Look who is "palling around with terrorists." Sarah Palin is a hypocrite among other things!!!

    March 25, 2010 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  6. CBass

    It's all fun and games until someone gets hurt. Right Rethugs?

    March 25, 2010 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  7. Chris

    The Republicans have now sunk to a new low. We, and yes I'm one of them, are now in the same category as the Al Qaeda. Who new that my party would use violence and behavior that is not what I thought we were supposed to be all about. Because of Sarah Palin and others, I'm changing to either Independent or Democrat status. The disrespect to our lawmakers is just not what Americans, I think they are Americans, should be displaying in front of the world. the world will be in a better position to take advantage of the US because what they see. We are divided and not united. How embarassing the Rebuplicans are, how undignified is the Tea Party Group, and how lost are our Republican politicians. All of this because of greed, power, and ego!!! I'm on a mission to vote every Republican out of office this year.

    March 25, 2010 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  8. coy4one

    There are people in this country that get their messages from pictures. Just because you don't say, "shoot them" does not mean that it is not implied in what the pictures say. This is plain irresponsibility. This woman is not the kind of women that can be President and lead ALL PEOPLE, which is what is expected of any President.

    March 25, 2010 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  9. Dave

    Sarah Palin is stoking hatred and violence, and the sooner the FBI
    gets involved, the better. These latest acts of violence against people
    and property sets a very dangerous precedent for this country. The
    stance that this is somehow "cute", gives the morbid impression that
    silence is a sign of passive consent. The FBI needs to seriously look
    into this group of organized hate which thinly veils itself as
    "The Tea Party".

    Because when someone gets hurt or killed, it will be too late. If history
    has taught us anything, its to never underestimate the stupidity of
    some of the people who call themselves Americans.

    March 25, 2010 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  10. Bev

    Your words and your actions are two different things Sarah! Putting rifle crosshairs over the areas where democratic congressmen/women are from, has only ONE message – that of violence, of being shot at and possibly killed. There is no other explanation. They can sugar coat it any way they want. These are human beings Sarah, not moose!!

    March 25, 2010 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  11. Santiago

    Sarah Palin is "Stupid is Stupid does". Senator McCain is a follower not a leader.

    March 25, 2010 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  12. amie

    how can such hate filled people claim to be the party of Christ?

    you can't back away from gunsights, palin and here ilk are creating the next tim mcveigh right now!

    March 25, 2010 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  13. J.R. Toronto

    Sometimes I wonder how these and other people like the GOP consider their way of thinking really goes against real Human Values!? When they incite hared and violence(silent and vocal) against anyone. The original Republican stance was never like this, President Eisenhower was the last TRUE Republican and he is now turning over in his grave. Republican, Democrat, or Independent, when a government is trying to help their citizens and future generation, people should be proud to see sometime positive to make their country better.
    The world is sad and worry – for Palin and alike do not have to be concern about outside terrorists – the USA and their inside terrorists are doing the job for them. Self destruction is the true sign of inner evil, GOP!

    March 25, 2010 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  14. Tom from Vermilion, Ohio

    "An ADVISOR to Palin responded by pointing to several instances..." Where's Palin? Where's the video clip where she's appealing to the perpatrators to stop harassing the Congress Persons? Where's the video clip of her explaining the meaning of the crosshairs on the US map? Why is it always somebody else who speaks for her on her behalf? Where's 'Leader Palin', or should it be asked who's Leading Palin?

    March 25, 2010 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  15. Truth

    The WH doesn't need Gibbs. NBC is their Press Secretary. NBC is a race baiting network and they incite dangerous behavior and violence NOT SarahPalin.

    Palin's facebook: We’re going to reclaim the power of the people from those who disregarded the will of the people. We’re going to fire them and send them back to the private sector, which has been shrinking thanks to their destructive government-growing policies. Maybe when they join the millions of unemployed, they’ll understand why Americans wanted them to focus on job creation and an invigorated private sector. Come November, we’re going to print pink slips for members of Congress as fast as they’ve been printing money.

    March 25, 2010 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  16. Realist

    Scary is what the republicans have become. The fringe has taken over and democracy has been threatened. Using crosshairs on targeted districts are unacceptable of a form of dissent. Imagine if the democrats used these tactics against republicans and the outrage would cause within the republican party. Now we have violence against democrats, death threats directed at them and their family. And McCain calls it rhetoric and seems to be ok with it and just brushes it off. Thank God and the American people for keeping this lunatic and his lunatic choice for VP out of office. McCain after the defeat he suffered has become irrational, bitter and angry and he has lost his senses. Maybe he was always irrational, angry and bitter but hid it well. McCain is showing his true colors and so are the republican party.

    We can disagree to disagree but in a democracy majority rules not violence or threats of violence against our ELECTED officials.

    March 25, 2010 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  17. t22

    Considering the Dems celebrated things like "The Assassination of George Bush" this is quite a turn of events for them. I seem to recall Libs following around Rumsfeld yelling "War criminal". The "threats" i've heard made to Rove and Cheney on these very boards are far beyond anything I've heard reported in this case.

    If liberals are so stupid to not understand that they will be "targeted" to lose their next elections, they certainly don't deserve and are not fit to handle the complex and important issues Congress must face.

    March 25, 2010 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  18. not_a_dem_anymore

    keep that propoganda machine running, Democrats! Now, if you oppose democrats, you are a right wing fringe militant or a racist...

    March 25, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  19. Rick - Ex Marine, Liberal


    Palin's statements above are hardly condemning anything.

    March 25, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  20. Tom

    Like a spark in a tinderbox, Sarah Palin better be real careful in the future. The lunatic fringe that support her would only need the smallest amount of encouragement to commit egregious acts.

    I hope the Secret Service has considered having a little sit down with Sarah and conveying the seriousness of this situation to her.

    March 25, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  21. slipthalo

    An aide states she's constantly condemning violence? Yep, right, sure thing – bullet crosshairs and a statement telling her followers to 'reload' makes those points real clear. She's violence on a front porch personified.

    March 25, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  22. G

    As much as I think that Palin is not qualified to be president, given this terrible budget, economy and healthcare bill, I don't think that she could possibly do any worse than President Obama. Obama's skill is speaking (better than even Clinton!). Everything else about Obama sucks, he appears to be completely incompetent. He's so bad he makes President Bush look brilliant and that is no easy feat!

    March 25, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  23. david

    believe there are many americans unhappy with the health care bill and the ruling democratic party, democratic sitting potus. not a palin fan, and haven't seen her fb posting, but crosshairs mean nothing. of course, anyone can make something out of it and apparently some are but palin is free to post whatever since there is free speech and freedom of the press. palin is not encouraging violence. if you don't like the health care bill, vote democrats out of office as soon as possible. simple as that, really.

    March 25, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  24. lyn

    I wish and pray that this hatefull woman will just go away,Palin is only spreading lies, hate,and violences through out America and I hope and pray that the Lord watch over the Democrats who is helping us who needed health care thank you Democrats.The Republicans are showing themselves to their supporters to spread lies ,hate and violences to the Democrats.

    March 25, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  25. Karen

    How sad that she can get away with encouraging violence so blatantly! When regular people threaten in this way, they go to jail. Why is she not? Why is she allowed complete freedom to incite violence?? It's a very scary sign of our times that there are people who actually believe in her – love of violence + stupidiity = DANGER. She should be locked up.

    March 25, 2010 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
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