An aide to Sarah Palin claims the crosshairs depicted in her now-infamous target list of Democrats were not actually gun-sights, and that it’s “obscene” and “appalling” to blame Palin for the shooting.
“We never ever, ever intended it to be gun sights. It was simply cross-hairs like you’d see on maps,” said Rebecca Mansour on the Tammy Bruce radio show. Moreover, there was “nothing irresponsible” about the image, and to draw a line connecting Palin and Saturday’s shooting is “obscene” and “appalling.”
[TPM SLIDESHOW: Across the Nation, Vigils Held for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords]
You can see the original image below. Mansour called the crosshairs “surveyor marks.” Palin has removed the list from her PAC website, but not from her Facebook page.
“I don’t understand how anybody could be held responsible for somebody who is completely mentally unstable like this. Where I come from the person that is actually shooting is the one that’s culpable,” Mansour said, before intimating that the suspect, Jared Loughner, is actually a liberal. “It seems that he people that knew him said that he was left-wing and very liberal — but that is not to say that I am blaming the left.”
[TPM SLIDESHOW: Dem Rep. Gabrielle Giffords Shot In Arizona]
“I never went out and blamed Al Gore or any environmentalist for the crazy insane person who went to shoot up the Discovery Channel,” she said.
Late update: A reader points out that Palin herself referred to the crosshairs/gun sights as “bullseyes” after the election.
Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight, and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at email@example.com.