Did anyone really yell "Kill him"?

The Secret Service says allegations that attendees at two of Sarah Palin's rallies called for the death of Barack Obama are unfounded.

By Alex Koppelman
Published October 16, 2008 5:05PM (EDT)

The Secret Service has investigated reports that supporters at two of Sarah Palin's rallies yelled "Kill him!" in reference to Barack Obama and has concluded that both reports were unfounded.

The first alleged incident, which occurred in Clearwater, Fla., was brought to public attention by the Washington Post's Dana Milbank. In that case, the Secret Service says, its agents listened to tapes of the rally and heard "tell him" or "tell them" but not "kill him." The latest report came from the Scranton Times-Tribune's David Singleton; agents tasked to investigate could not find anyone other than Singleton who heard the shout.

There have still been plenty of other nasty things about Obama shouted at McCain-Palin events, but the Secret Service takes this sort of thing very, very seriously. If it says it doesn't think anyone shouted "kill him," it's a good bet that it didn't happen.

Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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