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Have gun, Will talk: Arizona Sheriff Clarence Dupnik not speechless over Tucson shootings or much else

Arizona Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik 1-9-11

For a chief law enforcement officer who's supposed to be assembling the complex criminal investigations of six sudden homicides against a local 22-year-old suspect, Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik sure has found ample time the last couple of days to appear all over national news media, spouting prickly opinions on pretty much anything asked.

The sheriff, who celebrates his 75th birthday today, is understandably defensive. He had no officers at Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' Saturday open-air get-together in a shopping parking lot. Just the sight of a parked patrol car near a federal officeholder might have discouraged a troublemaker.

Indeed, Dupnik's deputies didn't arrive at the carnage scene until summoned by frantic 911 callers. By then, officers didn't even have to capture the suspected....

...shooter, Jared Loughner. Several brave, unarmed crowd members had already subdued the man; good thing they did because the kid still had ammo for his 9-millimeter Glock semiautomatic.

Dupnik followed the usual public relations communications template for such crises: a news briefing late the first day, as national media types and a parade of satellite trucks stream into town, to efficiently distribute to everyone at once what little information can be released by then.Arizona Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik

Authorities are usually quite circumspect at these initial briefings, for fear of poisoning any future jury pool ("We have the shooter!") or tipping off possible accomplices still at large.

Dupnik didn't release the name of the young man already in custody or speculate on a motive. The sheriff did, however, hand the upcoming legal defense some support by volunteering that the suspect was clearly unbalanced.

He also announced that Giffords, a personal friend, was the main target, although 19 other people were hit, six fatally.

And then, based on no evidence whatsoever, the veteran of 31 years as sheriff expounded on how the shootings were connected to the heightened temperature of today's political rhetoric. In his own prose certain to make Arizona tourism authorities wince, Dupnik said:

When you look at unbalanced people, how they respond to the vitriol that comes out of certain mouths about tearing down the government. The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous. And unfortunately, Arizona I think has become sort of the capital. We have become the mecca for prejudice and bigotry.

If, indeed, Sheriff Dupnik is quite certain the climate is so dangerous and Arizona so full of boiling political rhetoric, anger and abundant armed nutjobs stoked by irresponsible media that made his friend Giffords a likely target, why were there no deputies present Saturday or just stopping by the Safeway rally to be seen? The way donut shops and all-night convenience stores are so delighted to have uniformed officers visibly patronizing their place of business routinely.

This isn't the first time Dupnik willingly walked into politicial controversies, portraying himself as a simple law enforcement professional with no political interests. Last year he called Arizona's controversial new immigration law, which his department would be expected to enforce, "unwise," "stupid" and "racist."

At one church forum he commented, "We didn’t have a tea party until we had a black president.” Asked to elaborate, the sheriff added: "I was talking about how bigotry is alive and well in America.”

With little mystery and no manhunt to preoccupy the hungry media battalions, willing officials were in big demand to fill airtime.

And Dupnik was definitely willing. On Monday, the day of Loughner's first legal appearance, the sheriff had interviews with CBS News and Fox News. On ABC News, Dupnik attacked Rush Limbaugh, not previously thought to be involved in the case. On CNN he said "the hard right is deliberately fueling the fire." The sheriff also took a phone call from President Obama and no doubt will see him at Wednesday's memorial service at the University of Arizona.

"I'm especially disappointed in the sheriff," said Arizona's Rep. Trent Franks, "because we were looking to him for straight facts and he politicized this."

The unspoken truth is Dupnik's incorrigible media showboating may be just fine with federal investigators, who typically move into such high-profile incidents and quietly take over the investigations by Day Two. If the old guy's busy out front blabbing on TV, he's not in the feds' hair, as close-cropped as it usually is.

Related Items:

Tucson shootings: History reveals mental illness, not rhetoric, behind more assassinations

Sheriff Clarence Dupnik calls some Arizona gun laws height of insanity

Gov. Jan Brewer says 'Arizona is in pain, our grief is profound'

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Photos: Eric Thayer / Reuters

 
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Did we forget to mention this possibility? Did Dupnik dismiss Loughner threat?
See: http://www.redstate.com/moe_lane/2011/01/10/did-dupnik-dismiss-loughner-threat/
Was Dupnick deflecting?

I agree 100% with what the sheriff said: it's nothing more than common sense, a value which seems to get rare in this country. The author of this article tries instead to demonstrate that what the sheriff was talking about was not factual, thus indicating that he would have preferred an explanation excluding the true reasons of this drama.

This man should be investigated. He might be the missing accomplice. very suspicious on the way this guy spilling his guts in the media without taking responsibility in his part.

Dupnik is quite the pundit, dumbtwit, no?

At one church forum he commented, "We didn’t have a tea party until we had a black president.” Asked to elaborate, the sheriff added: "I was talking about how bigotry is alive and well in America.”

The tragedy in AZ may not have been politically motivated, however, the sheriff is absolutely right, conservative America was NOT ready for a black President.

You call yourself a lawman! What you said lately is a disgrace to your profession..

What if the sheriff is right?

Talk about unwise and stupid,this Dupnik gringo takes the cake.

Mr.Clarence Dupnik has a lot of wisdom in his observations and the courage to say it NOW it is up to America BOTH BLACK and WHITE to have a heartfelt gutcheck on what to do next for the future STILL can be made BETTER if yes if we LOOK at the current MESS.

Well, Mr. Malcom....you're wearing your own obvious political leanings on your sleeve. While it does seem that Sheriff Dupnik has been doing a bit of grandstanding, I believe his "Tea Party" assessment to be pretty much dead-on. I just wish he would have waited for a better time and place to say it.
But I'd be willing to bet that, had his rhetoric been slanted more to your own bent, you wouldn't have been quite so critical.

This article pretty much sums up my feelings and disgust about this highly political Sheriff in Pima County, AZ. As a long time Arizona resident, I was so angry when I watched his press conference where he played the race card and gave a political speech. He should have acted like a professional rather than spouting out his anger and political diatribe which now makes him the poster child for the ultra liberal left. This man should resign immediately. He has done more to inflame this situation than could possibly be done by any cable talk show or political pundent. Rather than uniting our community, he has demeaned its residents and driven a wedge between us all. Perhaps he was feeling guilty because he didn't do his job and now wants to blame others.

I am glad Sheriff Dupnik had the courage to ask for a more sane, healthy, less vitriolic political discourse. Yes, he politicized this. But why not? Can he not speak his mind? He still did his job. And I am glad that police is not present at every single event. It would be wonderful if there were fewer guns in this country, and if the political-social discourse was less violent. Maybe there would be no need for police officers at such events.

Let's all pile on Sheriff Clarence Dupnik for his comments about racism and bigotry of the people of Arizona.
Let's totally ignore the remarks of Hillary Rodham Clinton who told the Muslim world that America has extremists of their own.
What does Hillary suggest we do about our own extremists? Should we go to Arizona, hunt them down and kill them? Should we invite the Saudi's to come to America and join us in rooting out our own extremists? Should we fight the terrorists over there and ignore the ones we have here?
Whats next, more idiotic attacks on Dupnik while ignoring Hillary's idiotic comments?
These dissembling journalists are really starting to irritate me.

The sheriff is an attention addict with a political agenda.
Just like ALL Liberals. They, like Loughner didn't 'fit in' so the world around them has to be changed to fit their twisted and irrational outlook on life.

That's when We The People pay the price.

I commend Mr. Malcolm for speaking out about Dupnik and his ignorant comments. Blaming the conservatives for causing such a deplorable act by this deranged individual is downright outrageous - one for which I take offense as do many others. Just because the Tea Party and true American patriots are not happy with the runaway government does not in any way mean we are prone to violence. In fact, during some Tea Party rallies, the left wingers have planted rebel-rousers to shed a bad light on conservatives. If anyone has read Loughner's You Tube videos or listened to his friends, he was not a Tea Partier nor a conservative - quite the opposite. And, he was rejected by the military due to drug use. He was estranged from his parents, etc. etc. The leftist media better start reporting the facts and quit pointing fingers to the right. They are responsible for much misinformation in this country.

Actually, one of the 4 ordinary citizens who subdued Loughner was armed: Joe Zamudio was in an adjacent store, "ran to the sound of guns" but by the time he arrived he judged correctly that he didn't need to use his weapon, "I felt like I could hold him down and wait for police, and it wasn't my responsibility to end his life."

I think it's important to have public officials that speak their minds, not just fall back on generic and meaningless platitudes. Everything you quote from the Sheriff is basically correct. SB 1070 is stupid, unwise and racist. There is an insanely heightened level of rhetoric in my home state of Arizona. And it is pretty clear to everyone that the shooter has mental health issues. This is not handing the shooter's legal defense support. We live in a country where mental health is taken into account in a court of law. Sorry to those of you who want every case to be Guantanamo style--out of sight and out of rights--but this kid has the same legal rights that all of us do. The snarky rhetorical questions about why there wasn't a sheriff's office presence at the event is pretty damn easy to answer - because they don't have the resources because we live in a Republican dominated state where our Republican Governor and Republican representatives refuse to raise taxes in a time of financial crisis (an aversion to taxes based, on the surface, on long since repudiated Chicago school economic theories, and more accurately, as far as I can tell, due to Republican greed). You cannot take a right wing position on taxes and then get all uppity about their not being a sufficient police presence at an event. Finally, I agree with the Sheriff about Arizona's insane gun laws. Now don't get all slippery slope on me-- I support American's rights to own firearms--but guns with 32 round clips have no place in society, and this man who LEGALLY bought and concealed this weapon would definitely not been able to kill and wound so many with a six shooter.

Sorry, but your withering attempt to discredit a 75 year old who has spent over half his life in service to the public because you refuse to face the uncomfortable truth just reveals your intellectual dishonesty.

The congresswoman had already received death threats from right wing zealots, had the door of her office smashed by right wing zealots, and a right wing zealot accidentally dropped his pistol while demonstrating against her at a previous appearance.

The right wing are the American Taliban. In fact, they pose a more immediate threat.

The vitriol really started boiling up during the 2008 election, and went in to sheeer 24/7 hysterical HATE mode once Obama got elected. Because you assh*les have no respect for Democracy, you have thwarted the government in the house and bitterly attacked them in the media, and call daily for treason. Professional hate mongers like Rush Limbaugh fill the empty heads of the right wing base with hatred and paranoia.

You disgust me so intensely that I can actually taste it

I like Sheriff Dupnik a lot. Great man. Should run for national office.
I'd vote for him in a minute.

SO THE 75 YEAR OLD SHERIFF SPEAKS OUT ABOUT THE TRUTHS THAT WE ALL KNOW AND HE IS IMEDIATELY ATTACKED AS POLITISIZING THE STORY. I THINK HE JUST POINTS OUT THE TRUTH AS UNPALLETABLE AS IT MAY BE.

The sheriff isn't politicizing this... the political vitriol has become caustic. When a man brings a rifle to a political rally, that is not sending a message of spirited debate. That is a threat. And the fact that it's legal is disgusting and atrocious. That's not a constitutional right. It's a dangerous situation.

Our country was founded on the principles of revolting against a tyrannical government. When you call the current, legally-elected government tyrannical because they don't agree with you and are hoping to get some votes, some misguided people will take that as a call to arms. The people who say this garbage should be held accountable. They're allowed to say it, but the media and the people should call them out for it. And that's what he is doing. He doesn't agree with gunsights on a political map and he's right. And even better yet, he's got the right to say it just as others have the right to espouse hatred for political gain.

I find the comments by the Times writer regarding Sheriff Dupnik appallingly smug, and without any appreciation for the range of misery he has been witness to in his service to others for so long. It seems the Times' writer is resentful for the sheriff's attempt to communicate his concern that we live in an environment that makes such tragedies even conceivable. Why is that observation inappropriate, given its obvious correctness? He complains the sheriff was so available to the media - why is that a valid complaint?! He then chooses the occasion to criticize the sheriff for not having officers on site at the time of the shooting, Yet he provides no facts as to wether they were requested, or even if the congresswoman's staff had informed the sheriff's office of the event. This is responsible commentary? Then he calls the sheriff a showboater! If that tag applies to anyone, it is the writer, not the sheriff. Shame on the LA Times for wasting valuable print space on such dribble.

What a joke this guy is. You need to be some kind of dirt bag to inject partisan politics into a tragedy perpetrated by some nut. leftwing pundits are all too happy to pile on which results in Rightwing pundits firing back on the defensive. Now, thanks to this incompetent schmuck the race card and every other political cheap shot has been attached to this crime.

The guy should be fired. Has anyone asked yet why this kid was able to buy a gun in this sherrif's jurisdiction after several complaints of death threats by this nut were filed with the sherriffs office and apparently he did nothing about it? He must have been too busy providing pollitically charged comments to the media to do his job and protect the people who's safety HE is responsible for.

This coming from a known CONSERVATIVE "reporter" and former Laura Bush PRESS secretary. So obviously Mr. Malcolm, you cannot be taken seriously as someone who is imparcial. Not at all.

Because everything you see, you see it from a far-right conservative perspective, you simply have ZERO credibility on ever dealing imparcially with this issue or any other for that matter.

Mr. Malcolm, here are 10 reasons why someone like YOU is proud as heck for standing up for Rush Limbaugh.

THE TOP TEN RACIST RUSH LIMBAUGH QUOTES


1. “Have you ever noticed how all composite pictures of wanted criminals resemble Jesse Jackson?”

2. “Look, let me put it to you this way: the NFL all too often looks like a game between the Bloods and the Crips without any weapons. There, I said it.”

3. “The NAACP should have riot rehearsal. They should get a liquor store and practice robberies.”

4. (AfricanAmericans) “They’re 12 percent of the population. Who the hell cares?”

5. [To an African American female caller]: “Take that bone out of your nose and call me back.”

6. ”I think the media has been very desirous that a black quarterback do well. They’re interested in black coaches and black quarterbacks doing well. I think there’s a little hope invested in McNabb and he got a lot of credit for the performance of his team that he really didn’t deserve.”

7. Rush calls the POTUS: 'Barack the Magic Negro’

8. “I mean, let’s face it, we didn’t have slavery in this country for over 100 years because it was a bad thing. Quite the opposite: slavery built the South. I’m not saying we should bring it back; I’m just saying it had its merits.”

9. “You know who deserves a posthumous Medal of Honor? James Earl Ray [the confessed assassin of Martin Luther King]. We miss you, James. Godspeed.”

10. “Let the unskilled jobs that take absolutely no knowledge whatsoever to do — let stupid and unskilled Mexicans do that work.”

So, like I said before... Anything that comes out of Andrew Malcolm is just a bunch of extreme-right B.S.

Well, one thing's for sure. Mr. Malcolm is more interested in tearing down the sheriff than the "nutjob," to use his word.

In case you haven't heard, Mr. Malcolm, in most states the sheriffs are elected political officials. Why do you find it strange that they express political opinions on issues that have a direct bearing on their jobs?

And what intelligent, rational person would doubt that violent rhetoric and symbols could feed the paranoia and daring-do of "nutjobs?" Maybe they had nothing to do with this - but maybe they did. You don't know any more than anyone else how much bearing they had.

As for me, I much prefer the sheriff's opinion to your defense of the indefensible. I would vote for him in a heartbeat. You? Never.

"Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment"

Oh, my. I didn't realize the LA Times was a right wing mouthpiece which allows comments only if they please the authors.

You guys ever heard of democracy?

Welcome to 1984 in 2011.

Dupnik is either maliciously incompetent or just dumber than a box of rocks...I'm torn between the two theories...what I do know is that he has a political agenda and is using the worst of tragedies to push it...what a jerk

You can't account for bat crazy, and we shouldn't circumscribe our civil discourse against the possibility that robust or even vitriolic public debate will be misunderstood by some lonely, insane soul. Beyond that, it's repugnant for Dupnik to characterize the rhetoric he finds objectionable along strictly party lines--there's venom a-plenty on the left, too. It's also reprehensible and childish for the sheriff to characterize our current political theater as involving one party trying to do good for the country while other party tries only to block it every step of the way. However noble the sentiments of its supporters (and I don't credit much nobility for some of them), Obamacare is a developing fiscal and bureaucratic nightmare, and NONE of the CBO numbers will hold true.

It is not too harsh to say that the near year-long campaign to sell Obamacare was founded almost entirely on unrealistic if not outright fraudulent numbers and assumptions. Those supporting Obamacare whether for political or philosophical reasons became willfully blind to the iron-fisted manner in which it was pushed through the legislative grinder, and to the manner in which our elected officials refused to discuss it openly and honestly.

We the people, dear Sheriff Dupnik, are permitted to be angry and openly so under such circumstances, and we owe you and no one else any apologies for the actions of a hopelessly insane 22 yr-old man.

Sheriff Dipstik is an absolute embarrassment to professional law enforcement.

Assigning motive, which can be considered as a form of evidence, without one single shred of fact, is reprehensible for a law enforcement official.

What other cases in Pima County has his Keystone Kop mentality tainted.

BTW - What did his department do in their previous contacts with this lunatic?

What a disgrace.

Sheriff Dupnik is living proof that even septuagenarians can sound like morons.

I want to know more about Loughner's previous run-ins with the law, and whether law enforcement could have done more to prevent him from getting a gun or hurting other people.

He sounds like your ordinary Dupnik to me.
We should pay more attention to whom we vote for. No Dupnik s.

Perhaps Sheriff Dupnik's "rhetoric" is his pathetic attempt to cover up his own ineptitude?
He did not have any security posted for this event despite the fears of violence that he states were likely due to the "angry rhetoric". Does that not seem to be evidence of his department's incompetence? Why did his department not intevene in any of the 5 prior confrontations between the incoherent pot-smoking Murderer and law enforcement? Is that yet further evidence of his department's failure to provide adequate security?
His aggressive and overreaching attempts to place the blame on the rhetoric of others may speak more to his own incompetence and ineptitude in doing his job! Is a recall vote on this Sheriff in order?

the so called law officer should resign now

The best thing that can be said about how Sheriff Dupnik has handled this situation from a law enforcement point of view is that he is 75 years old and its clearly time for him to consider retirement! Lets hope the feds really have moved in to handle this investigation because the good Sheriff is clearly more interested in playing politics for the TV cameras than the drudgery of good police work!

Dupnik said we didn't have a Tea Party until we had a black president. No, no, no. THe correct statement is we didn't have a Tea Party until we had a socialist president.

Dupnik is a classic Leftist ideologue. His knee-jerk blame game is soooo typical of hate-mongering Leftists. Every event that happens, every comet in the sky, is twisted like a pretzel to somehow rationalize a commenction to conservatism. I'm only surprised he didn't accuse Bush of supplying the bullets to Loughner.

To the person who said "Can the sheriff not speak his mind?" the answer is NO HE CANNOT. He needs to comment on facts and evidence ONLY. Much like Mike Nifong in Durham during the travesty that was the Duke lacrosse case, Dupnik is making statements based on no facts whatsoever and is politicizing something that he has no evidence to support was political, or fueled by "vitriol" or anything else. Those defending him do so because he said something they agree with.

If he wants to run for another office, let him. But he is supposed to be talking about facts with regard to this case. The fact that he used it to climb on a political soapbox is a disgrace.

Philipp, how do you know the sheriff was citing the "true reasons" for the actions of Jared Loughner? You don't know the true reasons, I don't, and the sheriff doesn't. How can you defend him for stating the "true reasons" when you don't have any evidence to support that those are the "true reasons"?

Your argument suffers from a fatal flaw: you are trying to apply a framework of logic to an inherently and utterly illogical act. And you assume "vitriol" has led to this because you no doubt do not agree with those who supposedly are behind the supposed "vitriol".

Logically, according to your argument, then there would not have been assassins prior to the creation of this "vitriol". Yet there have been assassins all throughout history. Did you criticize Democrats when President Reagan was shot? Or do you just like to ignore facts and logic when making your arguments?

Loughner had made repeated death threats to numerous people, including the college he got kicked out of, and these had been reported to the Sheriff's office who had questioned him repeatedly.
HIS DEPUTIES ADVISED AGAINST ANY FURTHER LEGAL ACTION. It's thought because Loghener's mother is a fellow county employee.
IN SHORT, SHERIFF DUPNIK IS DIRECTLY RESPONSIBLE FOR THESE DEATHS. His compassion got in the way of his competancy to do his job of protecting the citizens of Pima County.
The drug and alcohol abusing anarchist should have either been in jail or a rehab center.
Is our President, a fellow Democrat, going to take this Sheriff to task? How many other crazies does Sheriff Dupnik have running around in Pima County??

Half way through the story I found this astonishing rationalization for his own hate speech:

At one church forum he commented, "We didn’t have a tea party until we had a black president.” Asked to elaborate, the sheriff added: "I was talking about how bigotry is alive and well in America.”

No, sheriff. The bigotry is alive and well in people who point out first and foremost that our president is black instead of being a socialist and imposing a leftist agenda upon the country that the majority of us resist. We didn't need a Tea Party until a socialist president, emboldened by a left wing controlled Congress decided to enact legislation the majority of centrist and right of center Americans couldn't stomach. The Tea party is their response. Notice how the right wing grassroots formed a political party to fight the fight for them, rather than buy a Glock and pump a fusillade of bullets into a political meet and greet. How dare this Humpty Dumpty buffoon, a supposed sheriff who couldn't even be bothered to send a uniformed officer to his "friend's" event, how dare he bloviate about cause and effect when he hasn't the faintest idea what he's talking about. This disgraceful public servant is just one more glaring reason for term and age limits for all elected officials.

--At one church forum he commented, "We didn’t have a tea party until we had a black president.”

He himself is a racist. I am a person of color and I can speak the truth that when Obama was elected with more than 50% of American voters, the left didn't say America is racist. Now many voters regret, not because of Obama's color but his agenda.

I certainly want Obama to fail - on his policies. I have no problem with his color, just his policies.

The American association of professional psychiatrists is preparing a press
conference on the Tucson tragedy. Insiders have indicated that the speakers
will recomend that Sherrif Dupnik cool it if he wants to avoid provoking
other regretable incidents by mentaly challenged persons.The association is
of the opinion that political philosophy played no role in the Tucson drama.

Mr Malcolm, this was a good article. But..........I am a native of LA and reading 90% of the posts on this page just reasserts to me that LA has really gone to seed.

First, by the sheriffs statements he has jeopordized the future legal case against the shooter. He is supposed to talk fact, not supposition, not to guess at the cause and surely not to try to make this fit his liberal biase to try and score political points.

Second, why is this sheriff not in his office investigating this case instead of spending all day on the networks talking trash about consevatives and not talking about how this criminal (ignoring the fact that he was a left leaning liberal as discribed by the people who knew him and by his favorite reading material, because it just does not fit in the picture you want to paint) as imbalanced and focus on the details of the case.

To blame this on anyone other than the shooter by the sheriff, the MSM and 90% of the posters on this site defiles the victims of this crime and shows your lack of character and sensativity. To say that the sheriff is right to politize this shows ignorance of actual police procedures, criminal investigative procedures and law enforcement public relations policies.

Look, I am a resident of LA and understand that what is remaining of the few subscribers of the left leaning LA Times (everyone I know has cancelled their subscriptions to this rag due to it being so biased) are also left or very left, but try a little harder not to show it by ignoring all the facts that this article's author has pointed out to you. A little reading of other sources will reaffirm what this author has said. It is a well written article and if these articles continue I might rethink my subscription.

Or chose to ignore what he (the author) has said and other sources have confirmed about this case and continue to completely make up your own story line to fit your little fantasy world.

Andrew's analysis is spot on. Jared Loughner was unstable and determined that he was going to shoot someone. The Tea Party has merely been pointing out possible targets to their reality challenged followers. How could anybody have expected someone to act out on their overtly terroristic rhetoric?

"What is government if words have no meaning?" was the question the shooter asked the congresswoman in a "Congress on the corner" meeting over a year earlier. According to a "friend" he was upset with her response (apparently none ... as she did not appear to understand the question) and called her "stupid" for not responding intelligently to his question. As others have pointed out the shooter had no affiliation with the Tea Party or any other known political group ... he lived in his own world. As a professional lawman the Pima County sheriff gets a D+ for his initial interview. A lawman with ANY training should be reluctant to proscribe motive with no evidence. He is supposed to gather facts not make them up. But some of his friends were the victims and he deserved some slack. Initially. But since he continues to repeat his superficial political agenda instead of doing his job I change his grade to F-. He is among the worst "law enforcement" officials in the country.

I'm confused. No connection between the murderer and "right-wing" anything has been demonstrated or evidenced (as has been noted by many of the more sane members of the MSM), and Bozo the Sheriff let this nut-case wander around Tucson after being informed that he made death threats. Yet, somehow, he manages to blame the innocent for his own incompetence.

Oh, and he's also managed to poison the local jury pool by making ignorant and uninformed public comments about the murderer's motivation.

Good job, Sheriff!

Since it is now being reported (thank you national media for being such a joke) that the Sheriff knows the killers mom, and that the mom worked for the county one has to wonder if the dear Sheriff isn't attempting to hide something by shooting off at the mouth.

By the way, I wonder how the Sheriff felt about the left wing nuts treatment of former President GW Bush? How about the left wing nuts treatment of Senator McCain? VP Dick Cheney? Palin, do we really need to go on.

sorry, sheriff, but we didn't have a tea party until we had our first socialist president. the color of his skin has nothing to do with it.

From Barbara - "In case you haven't heard, Mr. Malcolm, in most states the sheriffs are elected political officials. Why do you find it strange that they express political opinions on issues that have a direct bearing on their jobs?"

Well Barbara, incase you don't understand the job discription of a sheriff, it is something we like to call "law enforcement", not politics. He is not hired to write laws/legislation or wrangle with politicians, he is hired to enforce laws. When you mingle politics with law enforcement, you lose cases.

Example (not based on this case). Now that this sheriff has stated his political views on conservatives, one would only need to claim to be a conservative to allege that he (the sheriff) based his arrest of a perpetrator on the perps politics, not on the crime. Or that it tainted his view enough to interfer with his law enforcement/investigative duties. This sheriff has now become a liability to the county he has served, both in criminal and civil actions.

Why did Sarah Palin take down her graphic with the crosshairs on it? There were still numerous targets not yet addressed. Is she retreating instead of reloading? These guerrilla tactics of skulking into the background just after a confrontation are typical of terrorist warfare. She doesn't even follow her own rhetoric even if some of her most extreme followers do.

I wonder if the sheriff thought that making a movie glorifying the assassination of President George W. Bush was hateful or vitriolic.

 
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A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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