After blaming shootings on hip hop, McDaniel insisted that speech doesn’t cause shootings

U.S. Senate candidate and Mississippi state Sen. Chris McDaniel vigorously denounced the idea that actually violent political rhetoric had anything to do with U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ shooting in 2011 on SuperTalk radio, after previously blaming sometimes-violent hip hop music for shootings generally.

Quick refresher: When Giffords was shot at a public event in Tuscon, Ariz., people rushed to blame over-the-top conservative political rhetoric for the incident, because knee jerk political reactions to shootings have always proven so astute, historically. Most famously at issue was a Sarah Palin graphic featuring Giffords and other potentially vulnerable Democratic incumbents in the crosshairs of a gun, with the accompanying message: “Don’t Retreat, Instead – RELOAD!”

McDaniel’s comments distancing vitriolic rhetoric from the Arizona shooting can be found in the SuperTalk archives, while his rants linking hip hop to shootings in Canada were first dug up by a local political blog, Dark Horse Mississippi.

Clarion Ledger