Obama's attacks on Palin for not stopping people from yelling "kill him" turn out to be completely unfounded

From the debate last night:

OBAMA: I mean, look, if we want to talk about Congressman Lewis, who is an American hero, he, unprompted by my campaign, without my campaign's awareness, made a statement that he was troubled with what he was hearing at some of the rallies that your running mate was holding, in which all the Republican reports indicated were shouting, when my name came up, things like "terrorist" and "kill him," and that you're running mate didn't mention, didn't stop, didn't say "Hold on a second, that's kind of out of line."

And I think Congressman Lewis' point was that we have to be careful about how we deal with our supporters.

This claim is based on supposed what one person at one rally yelled. The only problem is that no one other than one reporter supposedly heard this. Obviously, Palin who was speaking didn't hear this, but this flimsy evidence didn't stop Obama from making this claim. This from the WSJ's Political Diary:

A Voice from the Grassy Knoll

Joe Biden's home town of Scranton, Pa. got a bit of a black eye on Tuesday when the local paper reported someone at a GOP rally featuring Sarah Palin had yelled "Kill him" when Barack Obama's name was mentioned. But it turns out neither the Secret Service or anyone in the crowd can substantiate the story.

The Scranton Times-Tribune reported on Tuesday that when congressional candidate Chris Hackett mentioned Mr. Obama's name, a man in the audience shouted "Kill him." But the Scranton News-Leader reports on its Web site today that Secret Service agent Bill Slavoski said that neither he nor any of 20 law enforcement agents present heard anything like that.

"I was baffled," he said, noting that an investigation by his team couldn't turn up even one person who had heard the threat.

The Times-Tribune reporter who reported the incident stands by his story but referred all media questions to his editor. "The facts reported are true and that's really all there is," said reporter David Singleton. Perhaps the Times-Tribune's motto could be: "We report. You decide if we're making it up."

-- John Fund

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