UPDATED – Rick Perry: Charleston Church Shooting Was A Drug-Related ‘Accident’ (Video)
2016 Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry today blamed the death of nine Black churchgoers shot to death by a young white man on drugs, not guns.
Blasting President Barack Obama‘s brief speech on the massacre at Charleston, South Carolina’sÂ EmanuelÂ African Methodist Episcopal Church, Rick Perry opted to try to change the direction of the nation’s discussion from guns and race to drugs. The former Republican Texas governor also oddly chose to classify the slaughter of nine Black churchgoers praying at a Wednesday night Bible study class as an “accident.”
Editor’s note: The Perry campaign says the governor misspoke. See update below.
During the President’s comments yesterday, he lamented that guns are easily obtained. Noting thatÂ not all the facts are yet known, President Obama said, “once again, innocent people were killed in part because someone who wanted to inflict harm had no trouble getting their hands on a gun.”Â
EARLIER:Â (Heart)Breaking Video: In Court, Victims’ Family Members Tell Charleston Shooter ‘I Forgive You’
Governor Perry, talking with Newsmax TV’s Steve Malzberg,Â took serious objection to those remarks, accusing the president of using the attack as an opportunity to bring up gun control.
“This is the MO [modus operandi] of this administration, any time there is an accident like this â€” the president is clear, he doesnâ€™t like for Americans to have guns and so he uses every opportunity, this being another one, to basically go parrot that message,” Perry accused.
So Perry used the opportunity to try to move the conversation away from gunsÂ â€“ the shooter reportedly had received a gun for his birthday this yearÂ â€“ and on to drugs. Roof has a small arrest record related to drugs.
“I think there is a real issue to be talked about. It seems to me, again without having all the details about this, that these individuals have been medicated and there may be a real issue in this country from the standpoint of these drugs and how theyâ€™re used,” Perry said.Â The Huffington PostÂ reportedÂ that “instead of discussing the racial motives, he suggested not enough people were talking about Roof’s previous drug arrest.”
As Right Wing Watch notes, Perry had “said that such drugs are responsible for high suicide and joblessness rates.”
He also said that “there are a lot of issues underlying this that I think we as a country need to have a conversion about rather than just the knee-jerk reaction of saying, ‘If we can just take all the guns away, this wonâ€™t happen.'”
Oddly, Perry also seemed to try to downplay the severity of the attack. Asked if it was terrorism, he said he didn’t know, “but I think the facts, once we get them â€“ there were more people than that killed in Paris.â€
Raw Story notes that Perry was “changing the subject to the Charlie Hebdo attacks, which claimed 12 lives.
UPDATE 5:54 PM EDTÂ â€“
In a just-published article, Business Insider reports that a Perry campaign advisor says the governor misspoke.
“When watching the entire interview, it’s clear from the context of his comments that Governor Perry meant incident,” said the adviser, Lexi Stemple.
Neither Governor Perry nor Newsmax anchor Steve Malzberg seemed to have a problem with the characterization as “accident.” It was only after dozens of media outlets reported it that the campaign thought it important to correct the record.Â
Jeb Bush: ‘I Don’t Know’ If The Charleston Church Shooting Was Racially Motivated
Santorum: ‘Indiscriminate’ Massacre Of Black Churchgoers By White Man ‘Assault On Religious Liberty’
‘This Wasn’t A Tornado, This Was A Racist’: Jon Stewart Drops Comedy For Charleston Shooting
Image: Screenshot via NewsMaxTV/YouTube
Video: Right Wing Watch
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Trump Lawyers Blindsided by Existence of Bombshell Recording – ‘They Don’t Know How to Defend This’: Maggie Haberman
CNN on Friday morning obtained a bombshell transcript of a recording in which former President Donald Trump boasts of retaining “secret” military information that he never declassified while he was president.
Appearing on CNN shortly after this news broke, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman revealed that the former president’s team was essentially blindsided by this recording’s existence.
“I don’t think they quite know how to defend this… from what we have heard,” she said. “They were… startled by the existence of this tape. This tape was something that they learned existed when this aide to Trump testified. The prosecutors were already in possession of this tape. They didn’t get it from the aide, although it appears the aide had a copy when it was subpoenaed later, but this is has been described to us by multiple sources… as a really problematic piece of evidence for Trump.”
Haberman predicted that the recording’s existence would not change the Trump legal team’s overall defense strategy, however.
READ MORE: ‘He’s just not that smart’: Trump buried by Morning Joe for handing investigators all they need
“I think they are going to stick that their line: ‘He says things, he didn’t mean it a certain way,'” she said. “I am sure they can come up with all kinds of explanations for why he used the language he used. But it’s on tape.”
Trump is due in court in Miami next week to face seven felony counts related to his handling of top-secret government documents.
Watch the video below or at this link.
Image via Shutterstock
Trump Indicted by Grand Jury: Reports
Donald Trump’s attorneys have been notified a grand jury has voted to indict the ex-president on numerous federal charges and ordered to appear in a Miami court next Tuesday, according to ABC News, CNN, and NBC News. Trump on his Truth Social account made a similar claim..
“Former President Donald Trump has been indicted in the special counsel’s classified documents probe, sources familiar with the matter tells CNN,” the network reports. “Trump has been charged with seven counts in the indictment, according to another source familiar with the matter.”
CNN has two sources confirming that Trump has been indicted pic.twitter.com/xY7aFXo9dL
— Acyn (@Acyn) June 8, 2023
“We’re learning from our sources that there appears to be at least seven counts here,” ABC News’ Katherine Faulders reported on-air, ABC News online reports.. “This ranges from everything from the willful retention of national defense information to conspiracy to a scheme to conceal to false statements and representations.”
MSNBC on-air reports NBC News has confirmed the Trump indictment, and NBC News online reports the indictment is “in connection with his mishandling of more than 100 classified documents that were discovered last year at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, making the twice-impeached former commander-in-chief the first former president to face federal criminal charges.”
Watch this currently ongoing ABC News live streaming video:
BREAKING: Former Pres. Trump has been indicted for a second time, sources familiar confirm to @ABC News.
@PierreTABC joins @DavidMuir: “This is perhaps one of the most consequential investigations the Justice Department has done in recent memory.” pic.twitter.com/klwOQjGoiK
— ABC News Live (@ABCNewsLive) June 8, 2023
In three separate entries on his Truth Social platform, Trump writes: “The corrupt Biden Administration has informed my attorneys that I have been Indicted,” along with several false allegations NCRM will not publish.
“I have been summoned to appear at the Federal Courthouse in Miami on Tuesday, at 3 PM,” he adds.
He also declares he is “innocent.”
This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change.
‘Where’s the Money?’: Biden Laughs Out Loud, Mocks GOP’s Allegations
Just as his press conference with the U.K. Prime Minister was coming to a close and reporters were asked to remain seated, a jovial President Joe Biden stayed and took several questions from reporters desperate to ask about Republicans’ baseless and unsubstantiated claims he accepted millions in bribe money when he was vice president.
Shouting “bribery allegations,” one reporter told the President, “Congresswoman Nancy Mace says there’s damning evidence in an FBI file that you sold out the country.”
As a smile worked its way across the President’s face, the reporter continued saying: “Do you have a response to congressional Republicans?”
The President did.
“Where’s the money?” he deadpanned.
“I’m joking,” he added.
READ MORE: Watch: Stunned Bill Barr Speechless After Fox Host Asks Why DOJ Is Pursuing Trump ‘In the Middle’ of an Election
“That’s a bunch of malarkey,” Biden ultimately responded, denying the claims which were fueled by FBI Director Chris Wray’s decision to allow the entire House Oversight Committee, in eluding far-right Republicans, access to an old FBI form documenting a second-hand tip alleging bribery.
NBC News Peter Alexander then threw a curious question at the President.
“Mr. President, what do you say to Americans to convince them that they should trust the independence and fairness of the Justice Department when your predecessor, Donald Trump, repeatedly attacks it?”
Biden quickly became less jovial.
READ MORE: SCOTUS ‘Surprise’ Voting Rights Decision Could – and Did – Have Big Implications for Democrats, Legal Experts Say
“Because you notice,” he said very seriously, pointing his finger at the reporter, “I have never once, not one single time, suggested to the Justice Department what they should do or not do relative bringing a charge or not bringing a charge.”
“I’m honest,” he stressed.
Foreign policy, national security, and political affairs analyst and commentator David Rothkopf responded to the video clip, stating: “Questions like these are not serious journalism.”
Watch below or at this link.
REPORTER: Nancy Mace says there’s evidence you sold out the country
JOE BIDEN: It’s a bunch of malarkey
REPORTER: What do you say to Americans to convince them that they should trust the fairness of the DOJ?
BIDEN: I haven’t once suggested what they should do. I’m honest. pic.twitter.com/TacFfZwFvG
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) June 8, 2023
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