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Robert Reich begins: "'Be careful of yourself,' I told Gabby last March, after the front glass door and a window at her Tucson congressional office were shattered."

Portrait, Robert Reich, 08/16/09. (photo: Perian Flaherty)
Portrait, Robert Reich, 08/16/09. (photo: Perian Flaherty)

Gabby Won't Be Stopped

By Robert Reich, Robert Reich's Blog

18 January 11


"e careful of yourself," I told Gabby last March, after the front glass door and a window at her Tucson congressional office were shattered. The attack came the same evening - Sunday, March 21 - she and other House Democrats voted for the healthcare law.

She laughed. "I'm tougher than nails. Nothing's gonna stop me."

This week House Republicans have scheduled a vote to repeal that same healthcare law. Unfortunately Gabby won't be there to reaffirm her original vote. Ten days ago a bullet fired at close range passed through her skull.

Yet Gabby continues to be tougher than nails. Her condition was just downgraded from critical to serious. She'll survive, and she'll continue to represent the people of the 8th district of Arizona with her courage and conviction.

Nothing will stop her.

Robert Reich is Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. He has served in three national administrations, most recently as secretary of labor under President Bill Clinton. He has written twelve books, including "The Work of Nations," "Locked in the Cabinet," "Supercapitalism" and his latest book, "AFTERSHOCK: The Next Economy and America's Future." His 'Marketplace' commentaries can be found on and iTunes. your social media marketing partner


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+47 # giraffe 2011-01-18 23:54
But I worry for Gabby and others who are the people we need in Congress. The best thing that has happened TO the Republicans (for us dems) is that Palin keeps talking - and the media keeps showing what she is -- and this reflects on the R's ---- hopefully those who voted for the R's in 2010 will see how WRONG they were to put so many of those (*#%_&_% in office.

Anthony Weiner -- asked the R's if the "med. fairy" will help those R's grandma if the R's repeal the health care bill --- Those who voted the R's in -- how is your grandma covered? By the R's fairy god-mother?
+21 # Pat Williams 2011-01-19 07:47
It isn't the people who voted for the Rs in the midterms. It's the people who did NOT vote for the Ds. If those people get some sense and vote, we might have a chance. Though I must stress that it is also essential that we stay on top of the voting systems themselves. Computer hacking and all manner of disqualifying or just plain losing votes will happen again by the millions, mostly in minority districts.
-10 # Bruce Haldane 2011-01-19 11:24
The people who did not vote for the Ds had good reason. Health care, Wall Street bailout, etc., etc. The Ds need to get back with thhe people if they want the support of the people
+16 # Robert A 2011-01-19 15:56
Quoting Bruce Haldane:
The people who did not vote for the Ds had good reason. Health care, Wall Street bailout, etc., etc. The Ds need to get back with thhe people if they want the support of the people

Wall Street bailout was started under W. Are you unaware of that? Health care reform is necessary to the 47 million people in the country without health insurance. Do you not care about your fellow Americans? Obviously not.
+7 # DaveW. 2011-01-19 11:22
goraffe, I, like any sane person, was horrified at the shooting of Giffords and the others especially the nine year old girl. You state in respect to "Gabby" and I paraphrase, "these are the "people we need in Congress." Giffords was a self-acknowledg ed "blue dog Democrat." I sincerely hope she makes a full and complete recovery and was appreciative of her "yes" vote on health care. But let's be honest. I'm a Democrat too. Voted in my first election in 1974. Do we "really" want people who are blue dog Democrats or do we want people like the other Congressional Rep. you mentioned: Anthony Weiner? Again, I fervently hope Giffords "gets well soon." But I honestly don't believe "blue dog Democrats" are the ultimate answer to our nation's digression. As a voting bloc "blue dogs" have voted as often with the Republicans as they have with Democrats.
0 # genierae 2011-01-23 17:01
DaveW. The problem is that she lives in a very conservative district, and she must represent them. She would not have been elected if she were a liberal Democrat. I agree that Blue Dogs are not what we need for real change, but I don't think that Rep. Giffords has any choice. From all accounts, she is a very good person, who has all the grit she needs to make a full recovery. I honor her courage.
+49 # hannuanttila 2011-01-19 02:26
On this side of water/Finland we are generally suprised how stupid appr 50% of yankees can be. In our country I guess less than one prosent would seriously even consider the slimy talk that Mrs Palin is spreading out.
I believe that the fight between Rs and Ds in USA is the most important elections in the whole world.
+20 # Alice W 2011-01-19 08:33
Oh that we had your wisdom--and your health care!
+40 # maxima 2011-01-19 07:57
in response to hannuanttila- you can't imagine how embarassing it is to be an American and have such a percentage of our population "represented" by someone like Palin. Free and open debate and opposing political or social viewpoints are vital to a democracy if they are well thought out, rational and educated. But more and more in the US it feels like the lunatics are running the asylum. Unfortunately, the general press for will not stop printing her every word, despite the lack of any real intelligent significance in what she says. Maybe it is because she does seem to speak for so many, but I think it is more that journalism here is so geared towards making money and the cult of personality really sells. In any case it is humiliating to see this level of discourse in our public exchanges, at the same time many Americans (and many of her followers) still seem to feel like they are the chosen people and should be leading the world. Seems like we could use a bit of humility and some time to get our own house in order.
+22 # redjelly39 2011-01-19 09:22
Its almost like Nazi Germany happening again right before ours & the worlds eyes - very scary and the message I am receiving is that if you aren't with the TeaBag/GOP - you are fair game....

As of 2000, 90% of all radio/TV media is owned by 6 Corporations. Thats 6... AOL-Time Warner, Viacom, NewsCorp, Disney, Bertelsmann & Vivendi Universal.

Here is the chart -

In 1983, 50 corporations controlled the vast majority of all news media in the U.S. At the time, Ben Bagdikian was called "alarmist" for pointing this out in his book, The Media Monopoly. In his 4th edition, published in 1992, he wrote "in the U.S., fewer than two dozen of these extraordinary creatures own and operate 90% of the mass media" -- controlling almost all of America's newspapers, magazines, TV and radio stations, books, records, movies, videos, wire services and photo agencies. He predicted then that eventually this number would fall to about half a dozen companies. This was greeted with skepticism at the time. When the 6th edition of The Media Monopoly was published in 2000, the number had fallen to six. Since then, there have been more mergers and the scope has expanded to include new media like the Internet market.
+19 # Todd Williams 2011-01-19 08:58
As Finland goes, so does the rest of the world. The entire planet must be laughing at the absurd comments by Palin and her crowd. This is very embarrassing for our country. The rest of the world must also know we've lost our minds because of the sheer number of guns we own and the violence these guns inflict. Frankly, we are rapidly losing what little of the moral highground we've had. An example at the highest levels, is the snubbing of the Chinese president's state dinner by The Tan Man. Again, old Tan Man is an embarrassment to our country as are many of his fellow Republicans (aka Tea Partiers).
+16 # fredboy 2011-01-19 09:31
Goodness will always prevail. Let's all keep that in mind to summon the courage and understanding necessary to confront such selfish evil.
+5 # J D Walling 2011-01-19 15:21
2 deficits seem poised to doom America. 1 is the 14+ trillion (accumulated mostly under GOP "budgets.") 2 is the intellectual deficit of a "Joe 6-pk." public that tolerates still more of the limited eco. "pie" going to the wealthy w/ GOP-style tax cuts. 2 is by far the greater threat.
-1 # Walther 2011-01-20 10:56
D vs. R? Come on!

Palin DOES NOT represent grassroots American political activists. She is forced on the public by the media who continues to pretend Ron Paul and the Liberty Movement isn't taking over the Republican Party. Come to CPAC or got to a tea party and you'll see how big the media lie really is.
+1 # Robyn 2011-01-21 18:47
There is a lot that I don't understand about American politics. Such as, how did someone like Sarah Palin attract so many followers. Everytime I read about something she has said or done, it's clear that she really is an idiot and yet she is constantly in the news. I also don't understand why subsidised health care is considered so evil. In Australia we have medicare and that helps people to be able to afford treatment when they need it. I would think that people would welcome it simply so that if they get sick, it won't send them broke. Like I said, there's a lot I just don't understand.

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