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Obama Arizona Shooting Response Gets High Marks From Democrats, Republicans: Poll

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A Washington Post-ABC News poll released on Monday finds that both Democrats and Republicans approve of how President Barack Obama has responded to the recent shooting in Tucson, Ariz. in which numerous victims were wounded or had their lives taken.

The survey comes in the wake of the president addressing the tragedy at a memorial service for the victims at the University of Arizona.

According to the survey, 78 percent say they approve of Obama's response to the incident, which was allegedly committed by 22-year-old Jared Loughner, who has been charged and remains in custody awaiting trial.

The poll finds that 71 percent of Republicans approve of the president's response. By contrast, only 30 percent overall say they approve of how Sarah Palin has responded to the tragedy.

"I believe we can be better," Obama said in his speech at the Arizona memorial. "Those who died here, those who saved lives here -- they help me believe. We may not be able to stop all evil in the world, but I know that how we treat one another is entirely up to us."

The Washington Post reports:

After calls from political leaders in both major parties to temper the rhetoric following the massacre, Americans are optimistic that Obama and Republicans in Congress will be able to work together this year on important issues. In the poll, 55 percent said they are optimistic that the two sides will do so, up seven percentage points from an ABC News-Yahoo! News survey taken just before the shootings.

Nevertheless, in the wake of the Arizona shooting, Americans remain split on whether heated political discourse fosters a climate that could encourage violence. ABC News reports:

On the Tucson shootings specifically, 54 percent of Americans do not think the political discourse contributed to the incident, while 40 percent think it did. Those who do see a connection divide on whether it was a strong factor.

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