On ABC’s Good Morning America, host George Stephanopolus, a former Democratic operative and spokesman for former Democratic President Bill Clinton, and Brian Ross suggested that the shooting suspect, a James Holmes from Aurora, Colorado, might be the Jim Holmes that is a member of the Colorado Tea Party.
“Now, we don’t know if this is the same Jim Holmes, but it’s a Jim Holmes of Aurora, Colorado,” Ross ‘reported.’
But as The Washington Free Beacon’s Bill McMorris said in a tweet this morning, a long list of ‘James’ and ‘Jim Holmes’ exists in Aurora, Colorado.
On another front, conservative news site Twitchy points out, Leftist extremists are blaming conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh for the shooting. Their speculative rhetoric is based on a segment from Rush’s show this week in which he accused the producers of the latest Batman movie of purposely including villian Bane in the movie, in order to subtly connect the villain to GOP Presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who founded private equity firm Bain Capital. Romney and Bain have increasingly been the focus of the Obama 2012 campaign’s negative attacks of the Republican nominee for President.
Here’s what Limbaugh said:
Do you know the name of the villain in this movie? Bane. The villain in The Dark Knight Rises is named Bane, B-a-n-e. What is the name of the venture capital firm that Romney ran and around which there’s now this make-believe controversy? Bain. The movie has been in the works for a long time. The release date’s been known, summer 2012, for a long time. Do you think that it is accidental that the name of the really vicious, fire-breathing, four-eyed whatever it is villain in this movie is named Bane?
The idea that the senseless massacre that occurred this morning in Aurora is the result of comments made by Limbaugh is ludicrous. Any speculation about the motives of the shooter are both dangerous and almost certainly misguided.
I expect this sort of reckless behavior from the political fringe, but not from mainstream media outlets like ABC News.
UPDATE: Dylan Byers has uncovered this non-apology from ABC buried in a story about the shooting acknowledging that it’s suggestion that the shooting suspect was a member of the Tea Party was “incorrect.”
An earlier ABC News broadcast report suggested that a Jim Holmes of a Colorado Tea Party organization might be the suspect, but that report was incorrect. Several other local residents with similar names were also contacted via social media by members of the public who mistook them for the suspect.
UPDATE: The Colorado Tea Party Patriots organization has released a statement via email and denounced the media for implicating one of their members, 52 year-old Jim Holmes, in the Aurora, CO theater shooting overnight. Here is the statement from the Colorado Tea Party Patriots:
The attempts of some media organizations to characterize the shooter as a Tea Party member without having made any effort to contact our organization are shameless and reprehensible.
Here is a video of the exchange from Politico in which Stephanopolous and Ross implicate the Tea Party in the shooting.