The attack on all things conservative by the media and the Democrats doesn’t seem to be gaining much traction with the public. An overwhelming majority of Americans aren’t buying into the meme that right wing political rhetoric is what prompted a madman’s assassination attempt on Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and murder spree in Tucson, Arizona.
CBS News reported:
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.Independents more closely reflected the overall breakdown – 56 percent said rhetoric had nothing to do with the attack; 33 percent felt it did.
Is it any surprise that more Democrats believe there’s a connection considering who’s making the allegations? (Allegations that are unfounded, I remind you.) In fact, the strategy could backfire on the progressives and make the 2010 election look like a walk in the park.
The biggest worry after the November elections was that a lot of people on the right would declare victory and go home. The shameless attempt to politicize the Tucson shootings and scapegoat people on the right has generated a huge amount of anger. Tea Party folks being who they are, I suspect this will mostly manifest itself as grunt-level political work in preparation for 2012 — precisely the opposite of what the scapegoaters were hoping for: Don’t get mad, get even, by making 2012 an even bigger shellacking than 2010.
On a related note, Republicans might want to step back and take a deep breath before joining Democrats and signing on to knee-jerk “never let a crisis go to waste” legislation.