Entries in Threats (4)


Secretary Salazar Apologizes for Threatening to 'Punch Out' Reporter 

Dept of the Interior(WASHINGTON) -- Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar has apologized to a Colorado Springs newspaper reporter after ridiculing and physically threatening him during an encounter earlier this month at a campaign event for President Obama.

The exchange, caught on audiotape by Gazette reporter David Philipps and later posted online by the paper, reveals Salazar becoming aggressive after questions about the alleged sale of hundreds of federally protected wild horses for slaughter and whether additional safeguards are needed.

“Do you see any changes that need to take place in that system in terms of safeguarding those horses?” Philipps is heard asking.

Salazar replied calmly, pledging that the agency is “working on it very, very diligently.” But then, amid rustling of the recorder when it seems the interview had ended, Salazar delivered a threat.  

“You know what, never do that.  This is a – this is the Obama -- You know what, if you do that to me again, I’m going to punch you out. Ok?” Salazar told Philipps in the recording. “Don’t ever, ever, from the Gazette or anybody else do that to me again. Set me up. You know?”

Phillips defended himself, noting that Salazar was there “as a public figure” and that previous inquiries through the department’s press office were unanswered.

“I’m here for President Obama. I’m talking about the campaign. You want to talk to me about a public policy issue, you can do that on another time, in another place,” Salazar said.

Blake Androff, a spokesman for Salazar, told ABC News the secretary “regrets” the exchange and personally apologized to Philipps by phone yesterday.  A post on the Gazette’s website confirms that an apology was made both by phone and in writing.

“As I said to you by phone today, I apologize and regret the statement I made to you in Fountain, CO,” Salazar wrote in a letter posted on the site. “I also will be happy to speak with you officially on the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Todd Akin, His Family and Staff Receive Threats

Chris Maddaloni/Roll Call/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Congressman Todd Akin’s office said on Thursday that multiple death and rape threats have been made against the lawmaker, who is running for the U.S. Senate seat in his home state of Missouri.

Spokesman Steve Taylor announced that “over the last couple of days, there’s been threats of rape of staff, the congressman’s family, and suggestions that people die.”

There was also a report of someone saying they would “legitimately rape” Akin’s wife, a reference to a statement the anti-abortion congressman made that it’s difficult for women to become pregnant in the case of “legitimate rape.”

Taylor said that Capitol Police and the FBI were looking into “which threats are accurate and how to contextualize them.”

A St. Louis TV station first broke the story that “multiple people have threatened rape and harm against Akin, his staff and family.”

Akin’s remarks created a firestorm that prompted GOP leaders to urge him to drop out of the race against incumbent Democrat Claire McCaskill.  However, Akin, after a lengthy apology, says he will remain a candidate for the Senate.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Chief Counterterrorism Adviser: No 'Specific Threats' on US Yet

ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- There have been no "specific threats" made against America in the nearly 48 hours since an elite team of Navy SEALs killed Osama bin Laden, President Obama's chief counterterrorism adviser told ABC News Tuesday morning.

“We’re working very closely with Department of Homeland Security, FBI and others so that we understand here at the White House what those measures are as well as what threats might be out there but right now I think we feel pretty confident that we are at the right posture,” John Brennan said.

Brennan said it is “inconceivable” that bin Laden did not have some sort of support system inside Pakistan -- considering he was hiding about 1,000 feet away from a military academy -- and the administration is investigating if members of the Pakistani government gave him any help.

“At this time, what we’re doing is pursuing the leads and engaging with the Pakistanis and it’s too early to tell what type of support system he had,” Brennan said.

They hope to find out more about that support system in the evidence the SEALs took from the compound.

Brennan also backed up the news that the White House is considering releasing a photo of bin Laden’s corpse as early as Tuesday.

“We are looking at releasing additional information, details about the raid as well as any other types of material, possibly including photos," Brennan said.

“Any types of material related to the raid, we need to make sure that we make the right decisions.   What we don’t want to do is to compromise potential future operations by releasing certain things so we’re looking at all of this and making the right decisions,” he added.´╗┐

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Death Threats Against Sarah Palin at 'Unprecedented Level,' Aides Say

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- An aide close to Sarah Palin says death threats and security threats have increased to an unprecedented level since the shooting in Arizona, and the former Alaska governor's team has been talking to security professionals.

Since the shooting in Tucson, Palin has taken much heat for her "crosshairs" map that targeted 20 congressional Democrats in the 2010 midterm election, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was the main target of Saturday's attack.

Friends say Palin, a possible 2012 contender, was galled as suggestions of her role in the tragedy have swirled.

Palin responded in detail Wednesday to the attacks leveled against her, but while her intentions may have been to shift the blame away from herself, she instead put herself in the hot seat again.

"Journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn," she said in an early-morning Facebook post Wednesday.

The term "blood libel" has been used historically to falsely accuse Jews of using Christian children's blood to prepare their Passover matzoh. The myth is said to have begun in Europe as early as the 12th century, perpetuated by the death of a small boy in England in 1144.

It's a term that Jews say has been used to incite anti-Semitism and justify violence against them for centuries.

Palin's use of the word has triggered some deep emotions, even among those who believe Palin has been a target of unfair criticism since the Tucson shooting.

The Jewish Fund for Justice assailed Palin for abusing a tragic episode in Jewish history.

"We are deeply disturbed" by her commentary, president Simon Greer said in a statement Wednesday. "Unless someone has been accusing Ms. Palin of killing Christian babies and making matzoh from their blood, her use of the term is totally out of line."

But not all Jews are offended by the term. Liberal political commentator and Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz pointed out that the term has been used frequently as a metaphor and in a broader context.

When asked by ABC News why the former Alaska governor chose the term "blood libel," a Palin aide responded with Dershowitz's comments and a list compiled by the National Review of recent examples of the use of "blood libel" in the media.

Politicians on both sides of the political aisle have been, for the most part, mum on the issue, although Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., did imply Wednesday that Palin likely didn't understand the implications of using such a heavy-handed term.

"Intellectually, she seems not to be able to understand what's going on here," Clyburn said in a radio interview.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio´╗┐

ABC News Radio