CBS News Poll: Nearly 60 Percent of Americans See No Connection Between Tucson Shooting and Hafetul Political Rhetoric

What motivated Tucson shooter Jared Loughner to gun down 20 people outside a Safeway, killing six people and critically injuring Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords?

Nearly 60 percent of Americans do not believe that "heated political rhetoric" is to blame for the shooting rampage in Tucson that left six dead and critically wounded Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, according to a CBS News poll released today.

"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," CBS News reported. 

A breakdown of the poll results by political party reveals that nearly 70 percent of Republicans felt that the two were unrelated, while Democrats' views were split almost evenly -- 49 percent saw no connection, 42 percent said there was.

Like Republicans, most Independents also did not believe there was a link between the attack and political rhetoric, according to the poll, which queried 673 adults across the nation.

Those closer to Giffords see it differently.

Congressman Steny H. Hoyer (D-Maryland) said on Face the Nation that he talked to Mark Kelly, Giffords' husband, and that Kelly was "very angry, very angry about the level of angry rhetoric that he believes incites people."

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