Giffords' Husband: Boehner Shunned Her

Mark Kelly Says Speaker Didn't Visit Wounded Gabby

Husband’s Hurt: Astronaut Mark Kelly blasted House Speaker John Boehner for failing to see Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords in the hospital after she was nearly killed in a mass shooting in January.
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Husband’s Hurt: Astronaut Mark Kelly blasted House Speaker John Boehner for failing to see Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords in the hospital after she was nearly killed in a mass shooting in January.

By Forward Staff

Published November 16, 2011.
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The astronaut husband of Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) slammed House Speaker John Boehner, suggesting that the GOP leader did not make any effort visit her in the hospital after she was nearly killed in an assassination attempt, CNN reported.

Mark Kelly blasted Boehner for shunning the wounded congresswoman in a new book, “Gabby - A Story of Courage and Hope,” that he co-authored with Giffords, according to CNN.

“Considering that she was a member of Congress and he was the highest-ranking member, we thought he’d ask to visit Gabby or at least give a call to see how she was doing,” Kelly wrote in the book, according to CNN. “Our only contact with him had been a simple get-well card he’d sent a few days after Gabby was injured.”

Kelly, who recently retired from NASA, claimed Boehner avoided dropping by to visit Giffords in her Houston hospital bed even when he was in the city for the NCAA Final Four basketball tournament in April, according to CNN.

Boehner hit back at Kelly, saying he kept in touch with the couple and even met with Kelly recently about a memorial for Giffords’ aide who was killed in the Tuscon shooting.

“The Speaker and his staff have been in close contact with Rep. Giffords’ staff throughout this difficult ordeal,” a spokesman for Boehner said.

Giffords was badly injured earlier this year after being shot in the head by alleged gunman Jared Lee Loughner, who opened fire at a public meeting she had been holding with constituents. Six people were killed and 13 were injured.

She recently opened up about trying to have a baby and her rocky road to recovery in a television interview with ABC’s Diane Sawyer.


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