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Sarah Palin Blood Libel

Sarah Palin Blood Libel - SARAH Palin has stepped into a fresh firestorm of controversy after accusing her critics of "blood libel" in her first public remarks on Saturday's mass shooting in Tucson.

The former vice-presidential candidate used a video statement to hit back at those who charged her with moral culpability for the attempted assassination of Gabrielle Giffords, the Democratic Congresswoman whose district she had picked out on a map of electoral targets emblazoned with rifle sights.

The seven-minute video, posted on Facebook, showed Mrs Palin in an Oval Office-style setting, speaking to the camera with the reflection of teleprompters on her spectacles. In it, she criticised journalists and pundits who, she said, "manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn".

Sarah Palin Blood Libel

"That is reprehensible," she added.

Mrs Palin's attempt at a presidential-style address came after days of debate about whether increasingly rancorous political rhetoric helped to foster a climate of hate in which the shooting took place.

Tucson's sheriff, Clarence Dupnik, an elected Democrat, laid blame on the "hatred and bigotry" for which Arizona had become a "Mecca". He went on to name the right-wing talk show host Rush Limbaugh as one of those responsible, attracting criticism from some who noted that the killer's motives were still unknown.

Sarah Palin Blood Libel

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