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Debbie Wasserman Schultz Accused of Blaming Tucson Shooting on Tea Party (She Didn't)

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If Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz said something profoundly stupid, we'd be all over it.

Unfortunately, this is a case of a Fox News writer saying something profoundly stupid.

When the headline "DNC Chair Blames Tea Party for Tucson Shooting" comes with a chopped-up video clip and an ellipsis right in the middle of the quote, that's a bit suspect.

Despite the headline, the actual text of the post doesn't say she "blamed" the Tea Party for Gabrielle Giffords being shot in the head a year ago, she merely "insinuated" it, or at least meant it "indirectly."

Here's the Fox News transcription/rendition/interpretation of what she said:

"We need to make sure that we tone things down, particularly in light of the Tucson tragedy from a year ago, where my very good friend, Gabby Giffords -- who is doing really well, by the way, -- [was shot]," Wasserman Schultz, the Democratic National Committee chair said during a "Politics and Eggs" forum this morning. "The discourse in America, the discourse in Congress in particular . . . has really changed, I'll tell you. I hesitate to place blame, but I have noticed it take a very precipitous turn towards edginess and lack of civility with the growth of the Tea Party movement."

The actual C-SPAN clip is of Wasserman Schultz answering a question from a crowd in New Hampshire, but not surprisingly, the question is left out of the Fox News edition.

"The American people are losing faith in Congress, I think it's because of the lack of civility," the man in the back says. "What do you think can be done to bring that faith back and [inaudible] instead of just fightin' with each other?"

Here's what was actually said on the C-SPAN video, which can be found here (emphasis is ours):

"Well, as someone who's spent 19 years as a member of a legislative body, I really agree with you, that we need to make sure that we tone things down, particularly in light of the Tucson tragedy from a year ago, where my very good friend, Gabby Giffords -- who is doing really well, by the way, and I know everybody," Wasserman Schultz said, before getting cut off by applause. "The discourse in America, the discourse in Congress in particular, to answer your question very specifically, has really changed. And I'll tell you, I hesitate to place blame, but I have noticed it take a very precipitous turn towards edginess and a lack of civility with the growth of the Tea Party movement."

You may notice C-SPAN went for a bit more tame headline choice: "DNC Chair Assesses NH Primary, Looks Forward."

"DNC Chair Blames Tea Party for Tucson Shooting" -- that's a little ridiculous.


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