Senator Mike Lee (R-UT), a "tea party favorite, is warning Democrats not to use the Arizona shooting as a ‘political football’ and claimed the 22-year-old suspect went on his Saturday rampage because he was crazy, not a right-wing ideologue," POLITICO reports.
“We all need to resist the impulse to turn it into a political football,” said Lee, who toppled Sen. Bob Bennett in a conservative-dominated party caucus last fall. “This is a tragedy, and I think it’s disrespectful to the victims and their families for us to try to use this for short-term partisan political gain. I don’t think we can tie this incident to anything other than a person who was either evil or mentally insane or some combination of the both.”
Lee was "skeptical that toning down political rhetoric would reduce the risk of violence against politicians – and cited the breakdown of the family, not the degrading of discourse, as the primary driver of the violence."