Gabrielle Dee "Gabby" Giffords (born 8 June 1970) is an American retired politician and gun control advocate who served as a member of the United States House of Representatives representing Arizona's 8th congressional district from January 2007 until January 2012, when she resigned due to a severe brain injury suffered during an assassination attempt. A member of the Democratic Party, she was the third woman in Arizona's history to be elected to the U.S. Congress.
Though a moderate on the issue during her time in Congress, Giffords has since become an ardent advocate for gun control. In January 2013, she and her husband launched Americans for Responsible Solutions, a non-profit organization and Super-PAC which later joined with the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence to become Giffords. She is married to former Space Shuttle Commander Mark Kelly, a United States senator from Arizona.
- My position is to listen to my constituents, learn from the best information available and ultimately make sound, rational decisions that are going to be beneficial to the people of the 8th Congressional District.
- On her political positions during campaign — Stephanie Innes (August 11, 2009). "Giffords: Too soon to settle on a plan for health care". The Arizona Daily Star (Arizona): p. A1.
- Our country must be strong enough to solve problems, and that means we must learn how to work together again.
- Comment after winning re-election — Bill Hess (November 6, 2010). "Giffords wins re-election to U.S. House; Kelly says voters have spoken". Sierra Vista Herald (Arizona).
- In the years that some of my colleagues have served — 20, 30 years — they’ve never seen it like this.
- We're in Sarah Palin's 'targeted' list, but the thing is that the way she has it depicted, we're in the crosshairs of a gun sight over our district. When people do that, they've got to realize that there are consequences to that action.
- After experiencing vandalism directed at her congressional office in 2010 — Ben Quinn and Paul Gallagher (January 9, 2011). "US congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords shot as six die in Arizona massacre". The Guardian (Guardian News and Media Limited). Retrieved on 2010-01-10.
- Our office corner has really become an area where the Tea party movement congregates and the rhetoric is really heated. Not just the calls but the e-mails, the slurs.
- Comment following a window being smashed at her congressional office in Arizona &mdash Richard Cowan (January 9, 2011). "Shooting could subdue overheated U.S. political rhetoric". National Post (Reuters). Retrieved on 2011-01-10. alternate link
- But the safety of the world, in some sense, depends on your saying "no" to inhumane ideas. Standing up for one's own integrity makes you no friends. It is costly. Yet defiance of the mob, in the service of that which is right, is one of the highest expressions of courage I know.
- Commencement address, Scripps College, 2009 — http://www.scrippscollege.edu/about/commencement/gabrielle-giffords.php
- It was one of the most memorable experiences of my life. I got to see firsthand the sacrifices that Israelis make in the name of security because of the dangerous state of affairs there. I will always be a strong supporter of Israel.
- Of her first visit to Jerusalem Israel National News 1/8/2011
- Senators say they fear the N.R.A. and the gun lobby. But I think that fear must be nothing compared to the fear the first graders in Sandy Hook Elementary School felt as their lives ended in a hail of bullets. The fear that those children who survived the massacre must feel every time they remember their teachers stacking them into closets and bathrooms, whispering that they loved them, so that love would be the last thing the students heard if the gunman found them. On Wednesday, a minority of senators gave into fear and blocked common-sense legislation that would have made it harder for criminals and people with dangerous mental illnesses to get hold of deadly firearms — a bill that could prevent future tragedies like those in Newtown, Conn., Aurora, Colo., Blacksburg, Va., and too many communities to count.
- A Senate in the Gun Lobby’s Grip. The New York Times (April 17, 2013). Retrieved on 2013-04-18.
- This defeat is only the latest chapter of what I’ve always known would be a long, hard haul. Our democracy’s history is littered with names we neither remember nor celebrate — people who stood in the way of progress while protecting the powerful. On Wednesday, a number of senators voted to join that list. Mark my words: if we cannot make our communities safer with the Congress we have now, we will use every means available to make sure we have a different Congress, one that puts communities’ interests ahead of the gun lobby’s. To do nothing while others are in danger is not the American way.
- A Senate in the Gun Lobby’s Grip. The New York Times (April 17, 2013). Retrieved on 2013-04-18.
Quotes about Giffords
- Gabby Giffords was a friend of mine. She is not only an extraordinary public servant, but she is also somebody who is warm and caring. She is well liked by her colleagues and well liked by her constituents.
- President of the United States Barack Obama — Lee, Jesse (January 8, 2011). "The President Speaks on the Shootings in Tucson: "We Are Going to Get to the Bottom of This, and We’re Going to Get Through This"". The White House Blog (www.whitehouse.gov). Retrieved on 2011-01-10.
- Congresswoman Giffords is a brilliant and courageous Member of Congress, bringing to Washington the views of a new generation of national leaders. It is especially tragic that she was attacked as she was meeting with her constituents whom she serves with such dedication and distinction.
- Minority Leader of the United States House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi — "Pelosi Statement on Shooting Involving Congresswoman Giffords". Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi (pelosi.house.gov). January 8, 2011. Retrieved on 2011-01-10.
- The thoughts and prayers of the House and the nation are with Congresswoman Giffords and her family. We're also praying for the families of Judge Roll and all of those who were taken from us yesterday so senselessly. Among the fallen is Gabe Zimmerman, a member of Congresswoman Giffords' staff, and I've directed that the flags on the House side of the Capitol be flown at half mast in honor of Gabe's death in the line of duty. An attack on one who serves is an attack on all who serve. Such acts of violence have no place in our society.
- Speaker of the United States House of Representatives John Boehner — "Remarks: Speaker Boehner Addresses Tragic Shooting in Arizona". Speaker of the House John Boehner (speaker.house.gov). January 9, 2011. Retrieved on 2011-01-10.
- My sister-in-law, Gabrielle Giffords, is a kind, compassionate, brilliant woman, loved by friends and political adversaries alike – a true patriot: What is going on in our country that such a good person can be the subject of such senseless violence? It's a sad day.
- Astronaut and brother-in-law Scott J. Kelly — "Astronaut Husband of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords: There's 'Little That We Can Do But Pray'". SPACE.com (www.space.com). January 10, 2011. Retrieved on 2011-01-10.
- She has a 101 percent chance of surviving. She will not die. She does not have that permission from me.
- Peter M. Rhee, trauma chief of the University Medical Center at Tucson — "Doctor: Giffords has '101 percent chance' of surviving". MSNBC. January 11, 2011. Retrieved on 2011-01-12.
- At first I thought she was trying to strangle me … It was miraculous.
- She's in the ICU. You know, gone through this traumatic injury. And she spent 10 minutes giving me a neck massage. I keep tellin' her. I'm like, 'Gabby, you're in the ICU. You know, you don't need -- you know, you don't need to be doin' this.' But it's so typical of her that no matter how bad the situation might be for her, you know, she's lookin' out for other people.
- Gabby's got a long road ahead of her. We know that the recovery from these [kinds] of injuries isn't measured in days and weeks. It's more like weeks and months. … But, you know, she's a really, really tough woman.
- Mark E. Kelly, on Giffords' ongoing recovery from the 2011 Tucson shooting — "Kelly: Injured Giffords cares for others". United Press International. January 17, 2011. Retrieved on 2011-01-17.
- 22-year-old Jared Loughner opened fire outside a Tucson, Arizona grocery store, shooting Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, Federal Judge John M. Roll, and sixteen others. At least six are dead and counting. Congress passed three laws against Westboro Baptist Church. Congresswoman Giffords, an avid supporter of sin and baby-killing, was shot for that mischief. A federal judge in Baltimore, part of the massive military community in Maryland and in the District of Columbia, put Westboro Baptist Church on trial for faithful words from God. Federal Judge Roll paid for those sins with his life. Today, mouthy witch Sarah Palin had Representative Giffords in her crosshairs on her website. She quick took it down, however, because she is a cowardly brute like the rest of you. The crosshairs to worry about are God's and he's put you in his and your destruction is upon you. You should have obeyed. This nation of violent murderers is in full rebellion against God. God avenged himself on you today by a marvelous work in Tucson. He sits in the heavens and laughs at you in your affliction. Westboro Baptist Church prays for more shooters, more violent veterans, and more dead. Praise God for his righteous judgements in this Earth. Amen.
- Fred Phelps, pastor of Westboro Baptist Church. — "Westboro Baptist Church To Picket Christina Green’s Funeral". Anorak News. January 10, 2011. Retrieved on 2011-01-12.
- U.S. Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords official U.S. House website
- Gabrielle Giffords for U.S. Congress campaign website
- Congresswoman Giffords Action Plan to Improve Border Security
- Profile at SourceWatch
- Gabrielle Giffords: USAA member since 2007 in USAA Magazine
- Chip Berlet on "The Becking of Gabrielle Giffords" - video report by Democracy Now!