Teresa calls for civility,
tells reporter ‘shove it’

By WND Staff

Teresa Heinz Kerry

Can Teresa Heinz Kerry take the heat?

In a speech yesterday to her home-state delegates to the Democratic National Convention calling for the restoration of a more civil tone in American politics, she used the term “un-American” to describe the sometimes harsh rhetoric used.

Minutes later, when a journalist from a Pittsburgh paper asked her what she meant by the term “un-American,” John Kerry’s wife turned angry.

“I didn’t say that,” she said. “You’re putting words in my mouth. I didn’t say that.”

Unfortunately for Mrs. Kerry, who sometimes goes by Mrs. Heinz, she did say it – very clearly in the speech recorded on videotape.

“We need to turn back some of the creeping, un-Pennsylvanian – and sometimes un-American – traits that are coming into some of our politics,” she told her fellow Pennsylvanians at a reception at the Massachusetts Statehouse.

Minutes later, Colin McNickle, the editorial page editor of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, questioned her on exactly what she meant by the term “un-American.” This confrontation, too, was videotaped by WTAE Channel 4 Action News in Pittsburgh.

Repeatedly she insists to McNickle that she did not use the term “un-American.” McNickle calmly asks her to explain what she did say, but Mrs. Kerry refused – at one point telling the journalist to go listen to the tape.

After conferring with Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell and others, Kerry then returned to confront McNickle.

“Are you from the Tribune-Review?” she asked.

“Yes,” replies McNickle.

“I thought so,” she said. “You said something I didn’t say. Now shove it.”

The aggressiveness of Mrs. Kerry’s return to McNickle is what has some people already buzzing about her temperament. Had a reporter dashed up to Mrs. Kerry the way she lunged toward McNickle, there is an excellent chance the journalist would have been seized by Secret Service agents.

Ironically, the confrontation came immediately following an even-toned speech by Mrs. Kerry to the Pennsylvania delegation – the first to be visited by the wife of presumptive Democratic nominee – about returning civility to American politics.

“I remember a time when people in political parties in Pennsylvania talked to one another and actually got things done,” she said, whose first husband, Republican Sen. John Heinz of Pennsylvania, was killed in a plane crash in 1991. “We have to go back to those days when we can do things properly, for the people need it.”

“My prayers for you, for me, for the country, for the world, are that we keep this at a high level, with dignity, with respect and with a great idealism and courage that took our forefathers to build this great nation,” she said.

Mrs. Kerry acknowledged being nervous about her scheduled speech before the convention in Boston tomorrow night. She said she had to practice “a speech that is written on the TelePrompters, and I’m kind of dreading it, because I am generally unscripted.”

Marla Romash, Mrs. Kerry’s spokeswoman, told WTAE-TV’s Scott Baker, “This was sheer frustration, aimed at a right-wing rag, that has consistently and purposely misrepresented the facts in reporting on Mrs. Kerry and her family.”

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