EXCLUSIVE: Claim that alleged bomber is a registered Democrat collapses

››› ››› MATT GERTZ

Right-wing media have falsely claimed -- citing no evidence -- that alleged Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad is a registered Democrat. Media Matters for America has contacted the offices of the registrar in Shahzad's hometowns and confirmed that he is in fact not a registered voter in those towns.

Shahzad's hometowns: Shahzad is not a registered voter

Media Matters confirmed registration status with Bridgeport, Shelton offices of the registrar. According to media reports, Shahzad -- who became a naturalized citizen in 2009 -- has lived in Bridgeport, Connecticut, and Shelton, Connecticut, for the past several years. Media Matters contacted the office of the registrar in both locations, and each confirmed that Shahzad is not a registered voter.

RightPundits originated, then walked back registration myth

Original post: Shahzad is "a registered Democrat in the state of Connecticut." In the original version of its May 4 post, RightPundits.com reported: "An Islamic terrorist named Faisal Shahzad is the Time Square bomber according to media reports. He is Muslim of Pakistani heritage with dual citizenship in the United States, a registered Democrat in the state of Connecticut who may be an Obama donor. He was recently naturalized as a U.S. citizen under the Obama administration's lenient open door policy."

RightPundits updated post to say it was "attempting to confirm reports of his voter registration status as a Democrat." RightPundits.com subsequently updated the post without comment to read: "An Islamic terrorist named Faisal Shahzad is the Time Square bomber according to media reports. He is Muslim of Pakistani heritage with dual citizenship in the United States, recently naturalized as a U.S. citizen under the Obama administration's lenient open door policy. We are still attempting to confirm reports of his voter registration status as a Democrat."

Blog also invented claims that Shahzad was naturalized "under the Obama administration's lenient open door policy," "may be an Obama donor." Shahzad reportedly became an American citizen after marrying an American citizen and passing criminal and national security background checks. A search for "Shahzad, Faisal" in the Center for Responsive Politics' Donor Lookup and the Federal Election Commission database reveals no donations by Shahzad in any election cycle.

Limbaugh, Hoft ran with baseless claim that Shahzad is a registered Democrat

Limbaugh: "Guess what? Faisal Shahzad is a registered Democrat." On his May 4 program, Rush Limbaugh said: "Guess what? Faisal Shahzad is a registered Democrat. I wonder if this SUV had an Obama sticker on it. Faisal Shahzad is a registered Democrat." He later added: "Fine, so so he's a registered Democrat, I want to see the Obama sticker on his car. Notice how quickly they got it out of Times Square, before anybody could hop and maybe see 'Obama 2012' bumper sticker on the damn car."

Hoft links to RightPundits, writes that "Shahzad is a registered Democrat." Gateway Pundit Jim Hoft updated a May 3 post, linking to the RightPundits post and wrote, "Shahzad is a registered Democrat in the state of Connecticut who may be an Obama donor." He also updated the post's headline, adding, "Update: A Registered Dem."

Posted In
National Security & Foreign Policy, Terrorism
Network/Outlet
Gateway Pundit
Person
Rush Limbaugh, Jim Hoft
Show/Publication
The Rush Limbaugh Show, RightPundits.com
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