Gabrielle Giffords resigns from Congress

Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords is the first Jewish woman to be elected from Arizona.

This morning, Gabrielle Giffords offered her official resignation from Congress to Speaker John Boehner. From

A crying Wasserman Schultz applauded the strength of her colleague. "I am so proud of my friend," she said, placing on her hand on Giffords' back and wiping back tears. "It will always be one of the great treasures of my life to have met Gabby Giffords and to have served with her in this body,” the Florida congresswoman added.

"Even though I know we won’t see each other every day," she concluded, "We will be friends for life." The two then embraced, as Wasserman Schultz began to read Giffords' resignation letter.

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Arizona’s first Jewish congresswoman, Giffords was shot during a rally in Tuscon in January, 2011. Against the odds, she survived the shooting and has bravely embarked on the difficult journey of recovery. In November, 2011 Giffords won us over with her first public interview, an emotional conversation with Diane Sawyer on ABC News.

Gabrielle Giffords is unquestionably a “Jewess with Attitude.” Raised by her Jewish father (the grandson of a Lithuanian rabbi) and her Christain Scientist mother who believed in letting her children decide their religious identity for themselves, Giffords embraces Judaism. She told the Arizona Star; "it provides me with grounding, a better understanding of who I came from." Giffords is featured as a “Cool Jewish Woman” on JWA’s new website for bat mitzvah-aged girls and their families,

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How to cite this page

Berkenwald, Leah. "Gabrielle Giffords resigns from Congress." 25 January 2012. Jewish Women's Archive. (Viewed on October 1, 2023) <>.

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