Poll: Majority approve of Congress’ handling of shooting

Congress received mostly high marks for its response to a shooting last week at a Republican baseball practice in Alexandria, Virginia, according to a new poll released Monday, although those surveyed said overall civility in political debate has deteriorated.

Fifty-three percent of respondents to the CBS News poll said they approve of Congress’s response to last week’s shooting, which left five people, including House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.), injured. Twenty-nine percent said they disapproved of the response from Congress.

The response from President Donald Trump, which included multiple posts to Twitter, a televised statement and a visit to Scalise in the hospital, earned the approval of 46 percent of those polled, while 36 percent said they disapproved of it.

Beyond the response to last week’s shooting, 68 percent of respondents said that the tone and civility of political debate in the U.S. is getting worse and 75 percent said it is encouraging violence among some people. Opinions of the state of political discourse are shared on both sides of the political spectrum, with roughly two-thirds of liberals and conservatives, respectively, responding that civility is diminishing.

Elsewhere in the poll, a third of those surveyed said the president’s response to the ongoing investigations into possible ties between Trump associates and the Kremlin, which Trump has labeled a “witch hunt,” has negatively affected their view of him. Just 28 percent of respondents said they approve of his handling of the investigations, while 63 percent said they disapprove.

Overall, the president’s approval rating in the poll released Monday sits at 36 percent, a low point for that number in CBS polls taken since Trump’s inauguration. Fifty-seven percent said they disapprove of the president.

The CBS News poll was conducted from June 15-18, reaching 1,117 adults nationwide via landlines and cell phones. The margin of error was plus-or-minus four points.


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