Governor Caught On Camera Joking About Shooting Journalists At A Gun Range


Right now, the journalism world is facing some scary times. We’ve got a president who may just cancel daily press briefings and refers to all negative media as “fake news.” Furthermore, we’ve got a guy body slamming a reporter when asked a legitimate question about healthcare and CBO scores who then wins an election for Congress.

Now, we have a governor joking about shooting reporters. Seriously.

Patrick Svitek, a reporter for the Texas Tribune, tweeted the alarming remarks made by Texas Governor Greg Abbott. Gov. Abbott signed legislation into law at a gun range that would allow license fees for handguns to be reduced. After doing so, he went shooting.

[email protected] goes shooting after signing bill that reduces handgun license fee. #SB16 #txlege’

After shooting, he showed off his skills by holding up the target sheet for reporters. We would expect no less with him being a proud rootin’ tootin’ pistol whippin’ Texas man.

However, it was afterwards that Abbott made alarming comments related to journalists. Svitek tweeted the remarks made by Abbott.

‘”I’m gonna carry this around in case I see any reporters,” @GovAbbott joked.’

What exactly is that supposed to mean? Is that a subtle hint, warning journalists Abbott has a good shot and they should be wary of what questions they ask? The First Amendment, created by the forefathers who the GOP so lovingly refer to, is meant to protect the freedom of the press to do their job of holding the government accountable to the people. It’s not an overreach to assume the creators of the Bill of Rights intended for that to cover intimidation tactics also.

Even jokingly, the comments were beyond inappropriate. With the current political climate in America, with tensions between the press and all levels of government at an all-time high, they were uncalled for and distasteful. With a reporter being body slammed by a now representative-elect the most basic freedoms of America seem to be in danger.

Abbott should issue an apology and recognize his comments were unacceptable immediately.

Featured Image by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.