Rep. Hovey Apologizes For Comments About Gabby Giffords; Malloy Calls Apology \’Appropriate,\’ Adding \’Nobody Has The Right To Say That\’

by Categorized: Newtown Date:

The following statement was released by state Rep. DebraLee Hovey in response to public Facebook comments she posted last Friday about former U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords visiting Newtown:

\"debralee\”The remarks I made regarding Congresswoman Gifford\’s visit were insensitive and if I offended anyone I truly apologize,\” Rep. Hovey said.  \”My comments were meant to be protective of the privacy of the families and our community as we work to move on, and were in no way intended as an insult to Congresswoman Giffords personally. Our community has struggled greatly through this tragedy, and we are all very sensitive to the potential for this event to be exploited for political purposes.  This is what I wish to avoid.\”

Rep. Hovey, who was in Florida attending a Board meeting of the Women in Government national organization during the Giffords visit, has been a strong advocate for her district and has called for a dialogue on mental health issues, improving school safety and gun control.

\”The events of December 14th affected all of us deeply and like many others I am still working through my grief and trying to come to terms with what happened, how we as a community and a state move forward and how we can prevent horrific events like this from occurring in the future,\” she said.  \”My deepest condolences continue to go out to the families, the community of Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newtown and Connecticut.\”

When asked about Hovey\’s comments about Giffords at a press conference Monday, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said they were \”impolitic.\” He said that just as he doesn\’t \”own the state\” and can\’t tell anyone to keep out of it, the same applies to what Hovey had said. \”Nobody has the right to say that kind of thing,\” Malloy said.

Malloy said that by issuing an apology, Hovey had done the \”appropriate\” thing.

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39 thoughts on “Rep. Hovey Apologizes For Comments About Gabby Giffords; Malloy Calls Apology \’Appropriate,\’ Adding \’Nobody Has The Right To Say That\’

  1. DOGMA

    Foot-in-Mouth damage control. At least she recognized the negative impact created from her “insensitive” remarks. I still find it troubling and disquieting.

  2. Keith

    she must not have read any of the comments regarding her facebook post as part of her apology read “if i offended anyone”. That would be an understatement. typical politician non-apology.

  3. JP

    “My comments were meant to be protective of the privacy of the families and our community as we work to move on… we are all very sensitive to the potential for this event to be exploited for political purposes.”

    Then you probably should have spoken to the private families who agreed to meet privately with this private family before you made your comment. The fact that they were accompanied by lawmakers who might help to effect change in this matter is hardly the issue – it’s what you yourself do every day.

    1. Newtown Nighthawk

      Disagree…She shouldn’t have spoke to ANY of those families in regards to this visit, it wasn’t her business. They were getting comfort. Debralee only wanted spotlight. She is selfish and maybe SHE should stay away and leave the town alone. I see she took down her posts about “attending ANOTHER funeral” on Facebook before she pulled it down like it was out of the way for her. She is a disgrace.

      1. Lils

        It would seem jarring to have Hovey at any of the funerals. I’ve been to many funerals in life, and when virtual strangers show up (regardless of them being town officials), it just changes the intimacy of the event.

  4. danno

    I would think she likely offended Gabby Giffords….but that’s just a thought. Maybe she could start by apologizing to her.

  5. DeeDee

    Rep. Hovey just keeps digging. “If I offended anyone” is the classic non-apology of scoundrels. Translation: I did nothing wrong in telling Giffords to “Stay out of my towns!!” on Facebook, but if YOU took offense, well, sorry. There is no contrition here, just a desperate PR move. As for “working through my grief,” what, with the margaritas and suntanning she boasted of in other scrubbed posts? And finally, what’s with the “has been a strong advocate…” etc., plug, or was that part supposed to be quoted too. I believe her constituents will ultimately decide that.

  6. kev

    Great piece. Not terribly illuminating for those of us who are unaware of what Rep. Hovey said in her post, but wonderful piece of writing otherwise.

  7. We are all Newtown

    I read her remarks and most of the comments that followed them. How is it possible to misconstrue the words “Stay out of my town, Gabby Gifford!” Yes, she misspelled the former congresswoman’s name. And most of the posters who agreed with her did so with atrocious spelling and grammar. Damage control indeed. Her comments were completely inappropriate and as a public official she had to know they’d be seen on such a public forum as Facebook

  8. Bruce May

    Obviously, this woman doesn’t get it. Gabby Giffords is a victim of a mass murderer just like the victims in Sandy Hook. Who is she to say that Gabby is not welcomed in “her towns?” I agree with the other writer: if she were my state rep, I’d move someplace else. As the old farmer said, “Once the horse is out of the barn, it’s hard bring him back in.” Once those hurtful words leave your mouth, no amount of apologies will suffice. Stupid is as stupid goes, my friends.

  9. Spike

    >>if she were my state rep, I’d move someplace else.<<

    Why not just vote her out and hope she stays in Florida?

  10. State Rep(rehensible)

    Well, technically there was an apology in there but she could have done without the squishy “justification” which further demonstrated her lack of class and candor. It will be up to her constituents next election as to whether or not she continues to represent THEIR towns.

  11. Judy

    She’s still says “Our community has struggled greatly through this tragedy, and we are all very sensitive to the potential for this event to be exploited for political purposes. This is what I wish to avoid.” In her original statement she felt slighted because she wasn’t included. If she had been included would she still think it was politicizing. Ms. Hovey just doesn’t get it. What a back handed apology. It would be better for her if she just kept quiet.

  12. s katz

    Like the trend which has infested the national Republican Party, Rep. Hovey is quick to launch personal attacks, and yet seems to have trouble providing actual political leadership to get the work of the public done.

    It’s much easier to walk around wearing teabags, wearing colonial garb, spouting nonsense and lashing out at good people than it is to provide reasoned discourse and debate. Connecticut should be ashamed they have people like Rep. Hovey representing them.

    It’s also quite interesting that the Representative apparently had nothing to say about the incendiary comments made by Wayne LaPierre.

  13. Lisa

    First off, the 70s called and they want their Hair Back. Second, “Ms.” Hovey has taught us all the dangers of Mental Illness. ;)

  14. Newtown Nighthawk

    Well, anyone that wants to complain to her directly can just visit Vazzy’s bar in Monroe most week nights or El Coyote bar in Monroe. When she isn’t riding horses she is holding court at the bar. Some representation…did you bring us back anything good from Florida DLH?!?!

    1. Scott

      Word is that she feels she has accomplished all she can as a state Rep and is getting ready to announce her candidacy for Worst Person in the World. She’s currently hard at work on an even more heartfelt and formal non-apology to be given at the press conference. What a dink.

  15. brie mcadams

    Maybe Congresswoman, if you were the one shot in the head two years ago, you would be a little more empathetic. One can only hope. Shame on you.

  16. Catherine

    This representative is an embarrassment to the state, her constituents and colleagues. “IF I offended anyone…” ?? yeesh, what professional person thinks that is an acceptable way to apologize?

    Try again Ms. Hovey.

    Absolutely sick of this; the killings of these innocent children and teachers. And the idiot comments of assault weapon advocates and fringe politicians. Enough is enough.

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  18. Joanie

    Maine didn’t want her, so why do we have to take her? STAY OUT OF OUR STATE….You will NOT be missed.

  19. Joanie

    and now she refuses to meet with the victims families to apologize to them in person…..Keepin’ it Classy?

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