Gallup: Belief in Kennedy assassination conspiracy theory falls to new low

The number of people who believe the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963 was part of a conspiracy has dropped to its lowest level in nearly 50 years, according to a new poll. 

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A Gallup poll released Friday still found 61 percent of people believe the assassination was part of a larger conspiracy, rather than the work of a lone gunman, Lee Harvey Oswald. Another 30 percent believe Oswald acted alone. 

The poll coincides with the 50th anniversary of his death next Friday. 

For most of the last 50 years, more than 70 percent of people consistently said the Kennedy assassination was part of a larger conspiracy. 

Immediately after the assassination on Nov. 22, 1963, a majority — 52 percent — believed the shooting was part of a conspiracy. But that number shot up to 81 percent 10 years later and remained near that level for years. 

The Warren Commission, tasked with investigating the murder, concluded in 1964 that Oswald acted alone. 

In an open-ended question in the Gallup poll, 40 percent of people who believe the assassination was part of a conspiracy offered no opinion of who else was involved. 

Thirteen percent of people named the Mafia, while an equal number named the federal government. Another 7 percent named the CIA specifically. 

The poll surveyed 1,039 national adults and has a 4 percent margin of error.