Poll: 57% of Americans don’t buy media spin on Tucson massacre

posted at 9:30 am on January 11, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

CBS polled almost 700 adults in the wake of the mass murder in Tucson committed by Jared Lee Loughner to determine whether the media spin that the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and the murders of six others was a political act had resonated with the public.  Perhaps surprisingly, the spin machine seems to have failed.  A majority of 57% say that politics had nothing to do with the shooting, and even a plurality of 49% of Democrats agree (via Dan Spencer):

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.

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.

It seems that the public has been able to separate the spin from the actual facts, which show that Loughner was a loon acting out of insanity and a personal grudge against Giffords, one completely of his own making.  The publicity-hound sheriff who’s supposed to be leading the investigation may want to get around to, you know, looking at the evidence, as the feds apparently have done:

There’s mounting evidence that the attack on Rep. Gabrielle Giffords wasn’t a political act but a plan by a disturbed high school dropout who had few friends and no clear agenda. …

Instead, Loughner may have had some self-generated dislike of Giffords that stemmed from when he first spoke to her at an event in 2007.

Court filings indicate the FBI seized papers from his home Saturday that talked of planning an assassination of Giffords and also included a letter she sent him four years ago thanking him for attending the event.

One Loughner friend, Bryce Tierney, told Mother Jones magazine that Loughner had harbored a grudge against Giffords for more than a year, and that he considered her a “fake.”

Getting back to the poll, it seems as though the media spin of the first 48 hours failed to even convince the predisposed.  Only 42% of Democrats in the survey believed that the shootings were a political act, and independents broke out at about the same ratio as the overall sample, 56/33.  That is very good news for America, and bad news for those in the media and in Congress who hoped to leverage the shooting to pass gun-control and speech-control legislation and bully grassroots conservatives into silence.


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Remember when ApriOrit expressed concern over Mr. Kenneth Gladney getting beat up at a tea party rally?

Yeah, those were honest times.

///s

Inanemergencydial on January 11, 2011 at 2:38 PM

Okay, I’ll submit.

I submit that the mass murderer who pulled the trigger is the only person to blame and, unlike the media,the sheriff and the State Senator who said the perp was an Afghan war vet and has yet to apologize, I can safely say that there is plenty of evidence to back up my submission.

Happy now?

Beaglemom on January 11, 2011 at 2:39 PM

ALL knuckledragging Conservatives (AKA real Republicans) worship at the FOX NEWS channel and that’s where we get our daily programming download untill Rush Limbaugh comes on for the midday update.
44Magnum on January 11, 2011 at 2:28 PM

I see that time in the “re-edjication camps” worked out…heh. :)

lovingmyUSA on January 11, 2011 at 3:40 PM

They’re still going at it. It seems like the less the public believes them, the more they ramp up the rhetoric thinking that if they tell bigger lies, they’ll get believers.

Tuari on January 11, 2011 at 3:51 PM

I am trying to hold on to the one I have – there will be nothing left after you moonbats & wingnuts stop screwing up my country….

AprilOrit on January 11, 2011 at 1:40 PM

I guess vitriol is o.k. when she is doing it.

I wonder who she submits to? Or what she concedes?

I’m all about submitting. I just wish I knew what I was supposed to submit and who I was supposed to submit it to. Or conceding. If I knew what I was supposed to concede and who I was supposed to concede it to, I would be ahead of the game.

Monkeytoe on January 11, 2011 at 1:51 PM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kpKJUa6IoBs

Del Dolemonte on January 11, 2011 at 4:41 PM

They never learn. The media cannot fathom why Fox is king of the ratings.

The reality is that Fox’s coverage was, in fact, pretty restrained compared.

AnninCA on January 11, 2011 at 4:48 PM

Submit to a POLITICAL G@NG-R@P!NG of Sarah Palin and the Tea Party? Wrong answer. You will not be allowed to utilize tragedy to criminalize my speech or my beliefs.

BradSchwartze on January 11, 2011 at 11:23 AM

No, that is not what i mean at all.

They shouldn’t be blaming her for anything.

Stop trying to put the blame on each other. Someone posted a tape from Stephen Colbert’s show and he compiled all the pundits, from MSNBC, CNN & FOX all blaming the other side.

Who cares what the polls say?

And why are they polling? To shove it in their opponent’s face?

Exactly…

AprilOrit on January 11, 2011 at 4:51 PM

Frankly, people who honestly spoke of the cross-hairs map as though that was “violent” are beyond my comprehension.

Now, getting up nightly and naming someone “the worst person in America” is definitely hate speech.

But they seem to like that. It’s beyond hypocrisy. It’s something else. I still haven’t figure out exactly what it is.

AnninCA on January 11, 2011 at 4:56 PM

Stop trying to put the blame on each other. Someone posted a tape from Stephen Colbert’s show and he compiled all the pundits, from MSNBC, CNN & FOX all blaming the other side.

Your comprehension skills are lacking. The left has blamed the right – for opposing the left’s desires and voicing opposition – for the murders. the right is reacting to being blamed for murders.

If you really believe what you say, you should be angry at the left and go to a left-wing site to express your outrage.

coming here to chastise us for reacting to being called murderers for engaging in political speech is absurd.

Monkeytoe on January 11, 2011 at 5:09 PM

We are now witnessing the spectacle of Democrats dancing on the graves of the deceased. If they think they can earn a buck or gain some political capital they have no shame.

swassociates on January 11, 2011 at 5:55 PM

But they seem to like that. It’s beyond hypocrisy. It’s something else. I still haven’t figure out exactly what it is.
AnninCA on January 11, 2011 at 4:56 PM

It’s not hard to figure Ann. It’s called hypocrisy. And it’s close to insanity in the case of Olberman, Krugman, Maher, Moore, O’Donnell and Behar. And we can add a new nut in the person of Mike Allen of Politico who could barely control his rage and was literally frothing at the mouth as he suggested on Morning Joe/Mika’s Boy yesterday that Palin need to issue a statement (to take responsibility for inciting the attempted murder of a politician from the other party – as well as the killing of 6 others including a 9 year old girl.)

Basilsbest on January 11, 2011 at 6:02 PM

April you’re NUTz.

CWforFreedom on January 11, 2011 at 6:42 PM

AprilOrit = Graduate of the Kelly Bensimon School of Logical Thought.

LASue on January 11, 2011 at 7:28 PM

Repeal ObamaCare.
Investigate the corruption of this President.
Defund the FCC.
Eliminate the Czars.
Repeal ObamaCare.

JellyToast on January 11, 2011 at 7:33 PM

Your comprehension skills are lacking. The left has blamed the right – for opposing the left’s desires and voicing opposition – for the murders. the right is reacting to being blamed for murders.

If you really believe what you say, you should be angry at the left and go to a left-wing site to express your outrage.

coming here to chastise us for reacting to being called murderers for engaging in political speech is absurd.

Monkeytoe on January 11, 2011 at 5:09 PM

Oh – I have been on the Left Wing sites – they’re not getting a pass either.

AprilOrit on January 11, 2011 at 8:45 PM

It seems like people just want to say “the rhetoric of the last 2 years” as if there was never any rhetoric before we had a half black President.

The things that were said about Bush and Cheney were worse than anything said now and Obama has said far far worse things to incite violence than Sarah Palin.

Wagthatdog on January 11, 2011 at 9:59 PM

Oh – I have been on the Left Wing sites – they’re not getting a pass either.

AprilOrit on January 11, 2011 at 8:45 PM

LOL…and I’ll bet those left-wing sites are just smarting in the aftermath of your chastisement.

ddrintn on January 11, 2011 at 11:44 PM

Oh – I have been on the Left Wing sites – they’re not getting a pass either.

AprilOrit on January 11, 2011 at 8:45 PM

A pass for what. What exactly do we need “a pass” for? For being incensed that the left is blaming the murders on political speech?

Your a joke.

Monkeytoe on January 12, 2011 at 8:33 AM

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