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Boehner: Congress Will Postpone Votes in Shooting Aftermath

A picture of U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) is surrounded by candles during a vigil outside the Tucson University Medical Center in Tucson, Arizona, 08 Jan 2011.

U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner says the shooting of congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords on Saturday will not stop her colleagues in the House from carrying out their duties, although they will postpone some scheduled business this week.

In a brief statement Sunday, Boehner said votes scheduled for this week, including on the repeal of President Barack Obama's health care law, will be postponed. But referring to the shooting, Boehner said no act, no matter how heinous, should stop Congress from doing its duty.

Boehner also said flags on the House side of the U.S. Capitol building will be flown at half-staff to honor an aide to Giffords who was killed in the attack.

Saturday, President Obama called the shooting in Arizona, which left six dead and 13 wounded, a "tragedy for the entire country." He said Giffords was shot while listening to the hopes and concerns of her neighbors.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi also condemned the violence. She said it is "with the deepest sadness that we have received word of the attack," and called it a "national tragedy."

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer said all of Arizona is deeply saddened by the incident and described Giffords as a noble and gracious public servant.

Earlier Sunday, authorities investigating Saturday's deadly shooting in the southwestern U.S. state of Arizona say they believe the target of the attack was a U.S. congresswoman.

The local sheriff involved in the case, Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik, told reporters late Saturday that the suspected gunman apparently intended to assassinate Democratic Representative Gabrielle Giffords when he opened fire outside a grocery store in her district, killing six people including a federal judge and a 9-year-old girl.