Rove vs. Williams, shootout on Hannity

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Fox News contributors Karl Rove and Juan Williams got into it again on “The Sean Hannity Show” Tuesday as they debated the left’s knee-jerk tendency to turn every tragedy into a political statement.

Hannity criticized Washington, D.C., Mayor Vince Gray for politicizing Monday’s Washington Navy Yard shooting when he called it the result of sequestration, according to Fox News video.

“The sequester was Obama’s idea, number one,” Hannity told Williams. “Number two, the sequester had nothing to do with this.”

He then pointed out the fallacy that an AR-15 was involved.

Williams claimed if anyone was politicizing of the rampage, it was the conservative right.

“Don’t bring up guns!” he claimed the right says. “Don’t mention guns! Guns have nothing to do with it!”

The shooter, Aaron Alexis, apparently had mental issues, Hannity said, and should not have been granted security clearance.

Rove pointed out that the D.C. mayor “ought to be counted on to attack the sequester because” the city’s economy is tied to the size of the federal government.

“I thought it was outrageous,” he said. “The sequester had nothing to do with the security status at the base.”

Rove scoffed at Williams’ claim that the National Rifle Association politicized the rampage, saying liberals were the only people who took political advantage of the tragedy.

“It was the president of the United States, [U.S. Sen.] Dianne Feinstein and other advocates of gun control,” Rove said. “The National Rifle Association has a policy on days like this of respecting the situation by not turning it into politics, and Dianne Feinstein in particular was really over-the-top in her comments about this.”

The debate came to a boil, with each raising his voice to be heard over interruptions. Williams accused the right of “Republican obstructionism” and said the NRA was “shutting people up, intimidating people.”

After the debate deteriorated into a loud session of crosstalk again, Hannity steered it to a common-ground issue — background checks for those with mental health issues. Williams agreed it should be addressed.

“Then let’s make it a priority, Juan!” Rove said.

Watch the exchange, courtesy of Fox News.

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