CNN host Jake Tapper has accused Republican politicians of attempting to exploit the fatal shooting on the set an Alec Baldwin movie to score political points with ‘cruel’ jokes about the incident.
Tapper made the remarks at the end of his show State of the Union on Sunday, pointing to tweets criticizing Baldwin from Senate candidate JD Vance and Rep. Lauren Boebert.
Baldwin, an outspoken progressive who has often called for stricter gun control laws, accidentally shot and killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on a New Mexico film set on Thursday, after he was apparently handed a prop gun loaded with live rounds.
Tapper said that the tragedy was ‘heartbreaking, for normal people’ but that ‘there’s something about our politics right now that is driving people away from our shared humanity.’
CNN host Jake Tapper has accused Republican politicians of attempting to exploit the fatal shooting on the set an Alec Baldwin movie to score political points
Tapper took aim at Rep. Lauren Boebert (above) who posted several tweets about the tragedy
The CNN host pointed to tweets from Boebert, a Colorado Republican and outspoken gun rights advocate, who shared old tweets of Baldwin’s to mock the actor.
In one she shared a tweet Baldwin posted in 2014 saying he planned to make T-shirts saying ‘my hands are up, please don’t shoot me.’
‘Are these still available?’ asked Boebert in a mocking response.
‘The Colorado congresswoman thought it was funny to exploit ‘hands up, don’t shoot,’ to make a joke at the expense of Baldwin,’ Tapper said.
‘But more importantly, really to make a joke at the expense of Halyna Hutchins and her husband Matthew and their son Andros,’ he said.
Boebert defended her remark in a follow-up tweet, writing: ‘I said what said. You crazy Blue Checks want to take away our right to defend ourselves with a firearm, and know NOTHING about basic gun safety!’
‘Alec’s careless and ignorant actions KILLED a woman. If this was a conservative celebrity you’d be calling for his head…’ added the congresswoman.
Baldwin (left) , an outspoken progressive who has often called for stricter gun control laws, accidentally shot and killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins (right) on a New Mexico film set
On Friday, Senate candidate JD Vance (above) posted a tweet asking Twitter to restore Donald Trump’s permanently suspended account, saying: ‘We need Alec Baldwin tweets.’
Tapper went on to say that a mocking tweet from Vance, who is seeking the Republican nomination for US Senate in Ohio, ‘more disappointing.’
On Friday, Vance posted a tweet asking Twitter to restore Donald Trump’s permanently suspended account, saying: ‘We need Alec Baldwin tweets.’
‘Vance seems to want Trump to attack and mock for a global audience Alec Baldwin for killing a woman in what almost certainly was a tragic accident,’ said Tapper.
‘Regardless of the pain of Matthew Hutchins or Andros Hutchins. And however this impacts Baldwin, and really, I mean, how might such an incident impact you? And he did this, J.D. Vance, why?,’ the host continued.
‘Presumably because he thinks it will help him win supporters. He did it to win votes. In other words, the cruelty is a feature of his candidacy, not a bug,’ said Tapper.
Tapper noted that Vance had once been a CNN contributor ‘hired for his perceived insight’ but said he was now part of an Ohio primary race ‘that seems to have become the Fear Factor of American politics, with contestants positioned against one another as to who can performatively appeal to the best at the lowest, common denominator.’
Tapper went on to claim that he’d received a text message from an unnamed Republican official saying that ‘After JD Vance’s tweet, being a horrible person is now actually a job requirement in this party.’
‘I hope to God that that Republican official is wrong,’ Tapper concluded.
This aerial photo shows a film set at the Bonanza Creek Ranch in Santa Fe, on Saturday. Actor Alec Baldwin fired a prop gun on the set of a Western being filmed at the ranch on Thursday, killing the cinematographer, officials said
Locals and members of the film community mourn the loss of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, who died after being shot by Alec Baldwin on the set of his movie Rust
Though not mentioned by Tapper, Rep. Thomas Massie, a Kentucky Republican, also put a political slant on the tragic shooting, taking aim at President Joe Biden in a tweet.
‘The shooting on the set of Rust was tragic and avoidable. But according to his speech a few months back in the Rose Garden, Biden would have you think the gun manufacturer should be held liable instead of the person or people who negligently mishandled that firearm,’ wrote Massie.
On Saturday, Baldwin was spotted hugging Halyna Hutchins’ bereaved husband Matthew in Santa Fe.
Matthew Hutchins, who has shared his heartbreak on social media after losing wife Halyna, 42, was spotted along with his assistant and the couple’s son Andros on Saturday in Santa Fe.
Halyna Hutchins lived in Venice Beach, California , with her husband Matthew, and their son Andros (seen together)
Father and son carried their luggage, likely after having checked out from the hotel they were staying at.
Andros and Matthew attended a private memorial held in Santa Fe on Friday, with Alec Baldwin also in attendance. It was reported that grief counselors were present at the service.
Matthew and Baldwin were previously reported to be in contact after the accident and the actor has been ‘very supportive,’ according to the late cinematographer’s husband.
The International Cinematographers Guild organized a candlelight vigil at Albuquerque Civic Plaza on Saturday, as calls for measures to protect movie crew from on-set firearm-related accidents grow.
Another vigil for Hutchins is planned for Sunday from 6pm to 7.30pm at the IATSE Local 80 headquarters in Burbank.