Tuesday, January 11, 2011
5:53 p.m. Statement from Loughner’s family read on CNN: “This is a very difficult time for us,” they said in the statement, asking the media to respect their privacy. “We don’t understand why this happened,” the statement says. “We care very deeply about the victims and their families.”
5:50 p.m. Just three days late, the Office of the U.S. Attorney said it is offering a hotline for the victims of the Tucson shooting. In the press release, U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona Dennis K. Burke says “We are doing everything we can to help the victims of this terrible shooting.”
5:39 p.m. After a unanimous vote in the Arizona House of Representatives on the funeral protection zone bill, Gov. Jan Brewer is expected to sign it today.
4:57 pm. Wondering where Loughner's parents are? So is Garance Franke-Ruta, a senior editor at The Atlantic.Check out her blog post.
4:42 p.m. Matt Heinz, Tucson-based doctor and member of the Arizona House of Representatives, explains the funeral protection zone bill on CNN, which will allow for a protective zone of 300 feet surrounding the property where any funeral is occurring. The vote, he said, is scheduled to take place in the next 10 to 15 minutes and assured that is it a strongly supported measure. “I believe this will be unanimous,” he said. This would directly affect the funeral of 9-year-old Christina Green.
4:34 p.m. CNN reports that a neighbor coming out of Jared Loughner’s family house told CNN that the suspect’s father assured that at some point, when they are ready, they will make a statement.
4:01 p.m. Former president Bill Clinton told the BBC that political rhetoric "falls on the unhinged and the hinged alike." Speaking to the BBC during a trip to Haiti, he said: "This is an occasion for us to reaffirm that our political differences shouldn't degenerate into demonization, in the sense that if you don't agree with me you're not a good American." Clinton added that Congress should “lead the way” in toning down and “go beyond turning this into politics.”
2:40 p.m. The Pima County Sheriff's Department released the following timeline of events to honor those killed by the shooting. In a press release, Deputy Renee Carlson states: "All the local agencies are working in conjunction with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms and U. S. Marshals to ensure that the events are secure for the families and members of the community to come together to mourn the loss of those who lost their lives in this tragedy."
- January 11, 2011- Mass at 1900 hours at St. Odillia
- January 12, 2011- Rosary for Christina Green from 1700 to 1900 hours at St. Odillia
- January 13, 2011- Funeral for Christina Green at 1300 hours at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton
- January 13, 2011- Rosary for John Roll from 1700 to 1900 hours at St. Thomas
- January 14, 2011- Funeral for John Roll at 1000 hours at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton
- January 14, 2011- Burial for John Roll to follow the Funeral at Holy Hope Cemetery (Private)
2:12 p.m. MSNBC has video of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi visiting Rep. Giffords's office.
1:30 p.m. The full text of the bipartisan House resolution to honor Giffords and those affected by the tragedy is available here. Submitted by Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, the resolution will hit the House floor Wednesday.
12:15 p.m. Comments from the victims' family members:
Daughter of Dorwin Stoddard: "I think our first statement would be to compliment the hero that lie on our father and we are blessed that he is walking with the Lord now and what a way to go as the hero; he lived that kind of a life. And I also think at this time we would love to say that it just brings the hero out in all of us at times of tragedy... and we just are very appreciative to everyone who stepped forward during the tragedy and as it went forward, there's so many people to thank. There were people on the scene that sat with our parents, prayed with them, held them, helped them, as well as everyone else; there are volunteers that are organized, as well as unorganized volunteers to step in just immediately; the hospital staff, FBI, everyone has been extremely helpful and we appreciate that. Our mother is doing quite well, actually. She has a lot of strength and courage and she will go forward."
Husband of Susan Hileman, who took Christina-Taylor Green to the event: "My wife, Susie, was the parent that took Christina-Taylor Green to this event. We have been here since 2006; my wife and I were fortunate to be able to take two years and look all over the country to pick a community that we wanted to be part of. Tucson was the one that we selected feeling it was one of the most natural melting pots of America that we could ever find. It has been a very decent community to us-- this event is extra shocking because of that.
"...When Christina was elected to her student council and started to express interest in government and the notion of helping people, my wife had been a social worker in New York and Chicago and Susie started looking for an event that she could share as they have done many other things. Gabby's event made all kinds of sense; from my wife's political preferences, it was a magnificent chance to provide a positive public female role model for little Christina. The two of them were together holding hands" at the time of the shooting.
12:08 p.m. Dr. Michael Lemole says of Giffords's status: "She's holding her own. Her status is the same as it was yesterday. She's still following those simple commands. We've been able to back off on some of that sedation and, in fact, she's able to generate her own breaths. She's breathing on her own. In fact, the only reason we keep the breathing tube in is to protect her airway to make sure she doesn't have complications like pneumonia.”
Meanwhile, Dr. Peter Rhee says of the other five patients: “We are currently at six patients still remaining in the hospital, one in critical condition, three in serious condition, and two in fair condition. One of the patients is undergoing surgery right now and the other one has already had their surgery today. Additional surgeries are planned for the rest of the week, but everything is currently going well with all those patients and progressing as expected and so far, no issues or problems at this time period."
12:05 p.m. Doctors say Giffords’s condition is “unchanged,” and that she can breathe on her own. More to come.
11:36 a.m. Dr. Michael Lemole tells CBS that Giffords will be "out of the woods" within the week: "We don't close the book on recovery for years. So, it will take as long as it takes," he said. "I think the most important question to ask is how long will it be before she's out of the woods, so to speak. And that, I think, will be in the next few days, maybe week."
11:33 a.m. National Journal's Terry Samuel confirms with House Speaker John Boehner's spokesman Michael Steel that Boehner will meet with the House sergeant at arms this afternoon.
11:28 a.m. A Fox News interview with Sheriff Edgar Domenech raises questions about Loughner's gun, which was reported to have been purchased legally.
"It indicates he went to a Federal Forms Licensee and filled out the 4473, which is form that an individual needs to fill out in order to purchase a gun from Federal Farms Licensee," Domenech said. "But there is one question on the form which asks, are you a drug user? All indications and preliminary investigations show that he was a drug user. So you have to ask -- if he had answered the question correctly."
11:25 a.m. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg says he will back legislation by Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., that would make it illegal to bring a gun within 1,000 feet of a government official, The Huffington Post reports. National Journal's Sara Sorcher has details on other New York and New Jersey lawmakers pushing gun control legislation in the wake of the Tucson tragedy.
11:20 a.m. In his pursuit of at least two pieces of criminal justice legislation, Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., said today that "things changed over the weekend.... The seething rhetoric has gone too far," National Journal's Chris Strohm reports.
11:15 a.m. Below is video from Britain’s Channel 4 News in which surgeon Peter Rhee says he is “100 percent” certain Giffords will survive the gunshot wound he has been treating since Saturday. “As a physician, I’m going to get into a lot of trouble for this, but her prognosis for survival is 100 percent, as far as it being short-term.”
10:01 a.m. Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., spoke on the tragedy in an address this morning at the Center for American Progress in Washington. Here is an excerpt of his remarks:
"Someone might ask why, with our country in mourning, we are here this morning continuing to talk about the business of the country. But the truth is that is what Gabrielle Giffords was doing -- talking about the business of the country. And the truth is, talking about the business of our country is more urgent than ever.
"John and I considered postponing this speech, which had been planned for some time. But serious times call for serious discussions. And after some reflection, both of us felt that not only should this speech not be postponed, but that, in fact, it was imperative to give it.
"So obviously, as we gather here this morning, last weekend’s unspeakable tragedy is at the forefront of all of our minds. Our thoughts are with Congresswoman Giffords and the families of all the victims. We pray for her full recovery, even as a nation mourns the loss of innocent life in such a senseless act.
"All of us struggle to understand this horrific event. There is much we still don’t know about what happened and why. But here’s what we do know without any question: On Saturday, a public servant went to meet with her constituents in the best tradition of our democracy, and while out, just doing her job, Congresswoman Giffords was shot down. Today she's fighting for her life, and six people lost their lives in this senseless assault not just on them, but, in its calculated planning for assassination, an assault on our democracy itself.
"Eerily, I heard this weekend’s news while in Sudan, representing our country in our collective effort to help a people who have endured unspeakable violence and who are trying to make a fresh start through their democracy. Yet as I stood beside those Africans who have lost loved ones in pursuit of the democratic values we Americans so proudly export to the world, there was an unavoidable clash with the events unfolding in Tucson -- a dramatic underscoring of the work that must be done to revitalize our own democracy here at home.
"Many observers have already reduced this tragedy to simple questions of whether overheated rhetoric is to blame, or one partisan group or another. And surely today many pundits and politicians are measuring their words a little more carefully and thinking a little more about what they’re saying. But in the weeks and months ahead, the real issue we need to confront isn’t just what role divisive political rhetoric may have played on Saturday -- but it’s the violence divisive, overly simplistic dialogue does to our democracy every day."
9:38 a.m. AP reports that Loughner's parents are "devastated and guilt-ridden." Fox News said this morning that a statement written by Loughner's father may be released by the Pima County Sheriff's Department later today.
9:08 a.m. Dave Weigel of Slate reports on conspiracy forum website AboveTopSecret’s claims that “anecdotal evidence” suggests a frequent contributor called Erad3 was Jared Loughner. According to Weigel, “The best evidence I've seen: On August 7, 2010, Erad3 put up a post about ‘infinite currency’ that matches what Loughner wrote in a December YouTube video. So if this is Loughner, what else did he think? It's hard to interpret. The first comment we can interpret politically is this, from July 2010, about the possibility of war in Iran.”
8:40 a.m. CNN reports that some people planning to attend 9-year-old Christina-Taylor Green’s funeral will don 8-by-10-foot “angel wings” to shield mourners from Westboro Baptist Church picketers. The Topeka, Kan., church has made headlines for protesting people who died of AIDS, gay people, and members of the military; it plans to picket Green's funeral because of her family's Catholicism.
8:10 a.m. Dr. Michael Lemole, chief of neurosurgery at University Medical Center, appeared on CBS this morning to comment on day three of Giffords’s recovery process.
“It’s one of the typical landmarks that we watch very closely,” Lemole said. “Because in a lot of people, this is the maximum day of swelling. But I caution everyone out there, this does not have to be that day; we might have to be on pins and needles for more days.”
8:00 a.m. AP's Pauline Arrillaga, in Tucson: “Doctors said Rep. Gabrielle Giffords had given a ‘thumbs up’ sign and tried to grab her breathing tube -- heartening developments two days after surgery for a gunshot wound to the head. Dr. Peter Rhee said surgeons had seen many encouraging signs. On Sunday and Monday, Giffords was able to respond to a verbal command by raising two fingers with her left hand.... [W]hile her brain remains swollen, the pressure isn't increasing -- a good sign for the congresswoman's recovery.”
7:50 a.m. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, tells hosts of MSNBC’s Morning Joe that he will “probably” employ higher security at public events.
7:20 a.m. Senate Sergeant at Arms Terrance Gainer says on ABC's Good Morning America that Congress members who want to carry weapons in the wake of the shooting should reconsider. His comments here:
"I don't think it's a good idea; I think we should leave the security to the professionals. There's things we can do to help minimize the risk in the districts... you work with the staff and the police in the area, to say where the subject is going to be, how many people are going to be, and we can analyze the threat information we get. And then decide how many law enforcement officers need to be there."
7:10 a.m. Shooting survivor Eric Fuller recounted on CBS this morning the scene of the "bad crime drama":
“Well, it was -- it was like a bad crime drama, with a gun being pointed towards me, and a very -- seemed like athletic young man pumping rounds off at everybody, and taking aim at us. So, not wanting to leave the world very soon, and not thinking that I could do very much except maybe get killed trying to stop him from the vantage point that I was at, I fell to the ground, as other people were doing. And expected the worst to occur after that.”
He went on to offer Giffords “every kind of encouragement that I could possibly think of.”