Nearly six in 10 Americans say the country's heated political rhetoric is not to blame for the Tucson shooting rampage that left six dead and critically wounded U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, according to a CBS News poll.If the president has half a brain he'll run fast from the thought of playing politics with this Wednesday when he travels to Arizona and in the future. He has a chance to regain some credibility with those who've left his party. Further alienating two-thirds of America by siding with the lunatic fringe would not be wise.
In the wake of the shooting, much focus has been put on the harsh tone of politics in Washington and around the country, particularly after a contentious midterm election. Rhetoric and imagery from both Republicans and Democrats have included gun-related metaphors, but the majority of the country isn't connecting the shooting to politics.
The lone suspect in the attack, 22-year-old Jared Lee Loughner, had expressed in recent years a deep-seated distrust of the government and personal animosity toward Giffords, according to evidence collected by authorities, YouTube videos he made and accounts from former acquaintances.
Overall, 57 percent of respondents said the harsh political tone had nothing to do with the shooting, compared to 32 percent who felt it did. Republicans were more likely to feel the two were unrelated - 69 percent said rhetoric was not to blame; 19 percent said it played a part. Democrats were more split on the issue - 49 percent saw no connection; 42 percent said there was.
Another poll also suggests it wouldn't be wise for the Democrats to go gun grabbing, either.
The left's behavior the past several days has been and puerile and venomous as I can ever recall. It's time the rational among them stepped forward to repudiate this behavior.