Former Nevada Senate candidate Sharron Angle denied that her campaign rhetoric helped motivate the Tucson gunman and accused the media of "finger-pointing towards political figures" to boost ratings.

Angle's suggestion during the midterm campaign that voters could pursue "Second Amendment remedies" to settle political differences with Congress has been widely criticized in the wake of the Saturday attack that left six people dead and Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) in critical condition.

"I have consistently called for reasonable political dialogue on policy issues to encourage civil political education and debate," Angle said in her first statement addressing the fallout from Saturday's attack. "Inappropriately attributing blame of a singular tragedy to achieve a political agenda is contrary to civil discourse, and is a media ploy to which I refuse to belong."

At the time, Angle said she was "speaking broadly" and not advocating violence.

But in the wake of the shooting, some Democrats and commentators have pointed to Angle's statement as one that could have helped motivate the gunman.

Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.) said the suspect in the shooting, Jared Lee Loughner, "saw a Second Amendment remedy."

"That's what occurred here and there is no way not to make that connection," he told the Charleston Post & Courier.

MSNBC host Chris Matthews also suggested Angle's rhetoric contributed to a violent political climate that preceded the shooting.

"I mean, it seems to be Sarah Palin using gun play language, what is she talking about, crosshairs and reloading, and Sharron Angle talking about Second Amendment remedies and [Rep. Michele] Bachmann out there with her kind of talk. ... I mean, it seems like the way people talk now has gotten more ballistic," Matthews said Monday on the program "Hardball."

Angle expressed concern that gun rights could be rolled back in the wake of the Tucson shooting.

"Expanding the context of the attack to blame and to infringe upon the people's Constitutional liberties is both dangerous and ignorant," she said.

"The irresponsible assignment of blame to me, Sarah Palin or the Tea Party movement by commentators and elected officials puts all who gather to redress grievances in danger."

Angle condemned the attack "as a single act of violence, by a single unstable individual."