Colorado tragedy, not Bachmann situation, prompted Priebus’ ‘silence,’ RNC aide says

The Republican National Committee says its chair, Reince Priebus, avoided the media Monday during his visit to Minneapolis out of respect for the victims of the Aurora, Colo., shootings.

Priebus’ arrival coincided with widespread reaction to comments made by Congresswoman Michele Bachmann about government ties to the Muslim Brotherhood – and allegations she made against Congressman Keith Ellison and the U.S. State Department.

 My Monday MinnPost article quoted local Republican strategists and noted that Bachmann’s comments had forced Republican politicians and operatives  into “no comment” positions.

Priebus, however, wasn’t one of those people, said Ryan Mahoney, regional press secretary for the RNC. He told me in an email that Priebus had discussed and planned a media event on Monday but that it was canceled out of respect for the tragedy in Aurora.

The email stated:

“We postponed plans for close to 30 press events in 15 states on Monday (including plans to hold one in Minneapolis) because of the tragic mass shooting in Colorado and we thought it would be inappropriate to hold a partisan press event when 70 people had been shot three days earlier. We would have loved to hold a press event in the twin cities yesterday but when everyone is focused on remembering CO, we didn’t want to create any partisan headlines to take away from honoring the victims.”

The staff of the Minnesota Republican Party, when informing me that there would be no media availability, did not offer that or any other explanation.

The planned Minnestoa event cited by Mahoney was to have been held in Brooklyn Center at a manufacturing company.

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