The Who2 Blog

Gabrielle Giffords Steps Down: Video and Transcript

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, shot in the head by a gunman one year ago, announced today that she will quit her seat in Congress this week.

She made the announcement in a curiously glossy YouTube video, complete with Hollywood-style background music and dreamy beauty shots of Arizona:

Here’s the transcript of the Gabrielle Giffords announcement:

“Arizona is my home. Always will be. A lot has happened over the past year. We cannot change that. But I know on the issues we fought for we can change things for the better. Jobs. Border security. Veterans.

We can do so much more by working together. I don’t remember much from that horrible day. But I will never forget the trust you placed in me. To be your voice. Thank you for your prayers and for giving me time to recover.

I have more work to do on my recovery. So to do what is best for Arizona, I will step down this week. I’m getting better. Every day my spirit is high. I will return and we will work together for Arizona and this great country.

Thank you very much.”

Good luck to her in her recovery.

Giffords still looks to be in worse shape than her team is willing to let on. The damage to her brain has affected her speech, and at times the video sounds like it’s being spliced together word by word off-camera. In the phrase “I don’t remember much from that horrible day,” the camera cuts after “much” and starts a new shot at “from” — apparently because Giffords didn’t or couldn’t speak the whole phrase in one shot.  

That may be the purpose of the travelogue aspects of the video: to allow constant cutaways to work around the fact that Giffords couldn’t make the statement in one piece. As we’ve noted in the past, her staff seems to be on a mission to put the best face on things, even at the expense of clarity or frank honesty about Giffords’ condition.

We salute her for stepping down and wish her the best in private life.  A special election will now be held to fill her seat.

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