The nation was captivated on Monday when Congresswoman Gabrille Giffords (D-Ariz.) made a surprise trip to Washington, D.C. after miraculously surviving a gun shot to the head earlier this year.
While the rest of the country was celebrating her triumphant return, MSNBC’s Chris Matthews used it as an opportunity to tie the Tea Party and America’s “right wing” to gun violence.
In the past, Matthews has accused Sarah Palin and other conservatives of wanting more war, he has called the GOP “tribalist” and “crazy,” compared Newt Gingrich to a terrorist and he’s attempted to draw similarities between the Tea Party and the Muslim Brotherhood, among other verbal offenses. Now, it seems he’s working to tie conservatives to the horrible incident that unfolded in Tucson, Arizona, earlier this year.
Following some positive words regarding Giffords’ return from both The Huffington Post’s Howard Fineman and Politico’s Ken Vogel, Matthews took the conversation on a bizarre detour, saying:
It’s also important to remember why she was, why she was coming back. She was shot by a violent act, of course a person using a gun, breaking up a political meeting with a gun, bringing one to a political event which we saw a lot of during the Tea Party demonstrations, people carrying firearms to political events. The violent level of the right-wing in this country, not particularly this case but generally where people feel the need to show firearms at political events, I think that’s a bad development in our history to bring guns to political events. [Emphasis added]
You should come to argue not to show your firearms. And to have now this horrible case of a woman who was shot down in her political act, meeting with her constituents shot, only not dead because of modern medicine and her character and her resilience, that is all part of this story this year, Howard, and I’m not going to forget it.
While he was careful not to definitively place blame for Giffords’ injuries on the Tea Party, Matthews drew an unnecessary correlation between the nation’s right wing and a violent murderer’s actions. Below, watch the dialogue for yourself: