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Published on Jan 8, 2011
This was originally Aired on March 25th, 2010. TUCSON, Ariz. -- A gunman unloaded a semiautomatic weapon outside a busy supermarket Saturday during a public gathering for Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, killing Arizona's chief federal judge and five others in an attempted assassination that left Americans questioning whether divisive politics had pushed the suspect over the edge. Giffords, 40, is a moderate Democrat who narrowly won re-election in November against a tea party candidate who sought to throw her from office over her support of the health care law. Anger over her position became violent at times, with her Tucson office vandalized after the House passed the overhaul last March and someone showing up at a recent gathering with a weapon.
Police say the shooter was in custody, and was identified by people familiar with the investigation as Jared Loughner, 22. U.S. officials who provided his name to the AP spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release it publicly.