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Reactions to shootings

By Reuters
January 8, 2011

Hundreds gather for a vigil at the Arizona Capitol for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, Saturday, Jan. 8, 2011, in Phoenix. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona was shot in the head Saturday by a gunman who opened fire outside a grocery store during a meeting with voters, killing a federal judge and four others in a rampage that rattled the country and left politicians fearful for their safety. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

Representative Gabrielle Giffords was shot and gravely wounded on Saturday by a man who opened fire at a meeting she was holding in Arizona. President Barack Obama, her colleagues and associates were stunned by the attack, which killed at least five people and left several others wounded.

Following is reaction to the shooting spree:

PRESIDENT OBAMA

“It’s not surprising that today Gabby was doing what she always does — listening to the hopes and concerns of her neighbors. That is the essence of what our democracy is all about. That is why this is more than a tragedy for those involved. It is a tragedy for Arizona and a tragedy for our entire country.”

ARIZONA SENATOR JOHN MCCAIN

“Whoever did this, whatever their reason, they are a disgrace to Arizona, this country and the human race, and they deserve and will receive the contempt of all decent people and the strongest punishment of the law.”

ARIZONA GOVERNOR JAN BREWER

“I am just heartbroken. Gabby is more than just a colleague, she’s actually a friend. She’s always been a noble public servant.”

AMY KREMER, CHAIRMAN OF TEA PARTY EXPRESS CONSERVATIVE GROUP

“These heinous crimes have no place in America and they are especially grievous when committed against our elected officials. Spirited debate is desirable in our country but it only should be the clash of ideas. An attack on anyone for political purposes, if that was a factor in this shooting, is an attack on the democratic process. We join with everyone in vociferously condemning it.”

HOUSE SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER

“An attack on one who serves is an attack on all who serve. Acts and threats of violence against public officials have no place in our society … This is a sad day for our country.”

HOMELAND SECURITY SECRETARY JANET NAPOLITANO, FORMER ARIZONA GOVERNOR

“There is no place in our society or discourse for such senseless and unconscionable acts of violence. Gabby is a steadfast representative for southern Arizona … The Department of Homeland Security has offered all possible assistance to the FBI and the Pima County Sheriff’s Office, who are leading the investigation.”

NASA ADMINISTRATOR CHARLES BOLDEN

“As a long-time supporter of NASA, Representative Giffords not only has made lasting contributions to our country but is a strong advocate for the nation’s space program and a member of the NASA family … We at NASA mourn this tragedy and our thoughts and prayers go out to Congresswoman Giffords, her husband (NASA astronaut) Mark Kelly, their family, and the families and friends of all who perished or were injured in this terrible tragedy.”

Copyright © 2011 Reuters

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