Tragedy does not bring out the best in some people. By some people, I mean politicians, especially those who are Democrats running for president. Since the mass shooting in El Paso Saturday began to dominate cable news coverage, candidates have rushed to deliver their own hot takes about private gun ownership. They are against it.
One Democrat candidate running to be the party’s nominee is from El Paso. Naturally, reporters flocked to Beto O’Rourke for his thoughts about the events of the day. A reporter boldly asked if President Trump “is at all responsible” for the mass shooting. Beto answered in the affirmative. President Trump is a racist, you know, so it has to be his fault. While he was at it, O’Rourke launched into a laundry list of standard Democrat talking points to justify blaming the president – Trump banned Muslims from America (it was a continuation of Obama’s travel ban, not a religious ban, for 7 specific countries), he called Mexicans criminals and rapists (the criminal element coming here illegally), and don’t forget the “send her back” chant at a campaign rally.
Beto blamed Trump while the real person to blame is the shooter. Him and only him. I’ll not use the alleged name of the murderer here. He was arrested and now he can work through the system.
#BREAKING I just asked @BetoORourke if @realDonaldTrump is at all responsible for today’s mass shooting in #ElPaso He said yes and added that in his opinion, the President is indeed a racist. @abc7breaking @ABC pic.twitter.com/wA3iB3uLFN
— Michael Gordon KVIA ABC-7 (@MichaelGordonTV) August 4, 2019
O’Rourke was in Las Vegas with other 2020 Democrat candidates to speak to the AFSCME convention when the news broke. Backstage he told reporters about his sadness and choked up about lives lost and families affected by the deranged 21-year-old man from the Dallas area (allegedly). Beto canceled his campaign schedule and flew back to El Paso where his wife and children remain.
Fellow candidate Cory Booker is encouraging supporters to fight the “corporate gun lobby”, which is the NRA, a routine scapegoat for the left.
Asked about the incident at a campaign event in Las Vegas, the New Jersey senator expressed that he’s “had enough” of these tragedies and criticized leaders around the U.S. for failing to stand up to the “corporate gun lobby” and the NRA.
“In this election, we have to have leaders who are willing to stand up and say, ‘I’m not going to let this issue be determined by what the interests of the corporate gun lobby are and the NRA,'” he said. “Because this is a uniquely American problem, a uniquely American problem that we have such mass slaughter in our communities like this, that happens regularly.”
The talking point used by Democrats is “we must act now.” Elizabeth Warren used those words.
The news out of El Paso is devastating. I'm heartbroken for the victims and their families. Far too many communities have suffered through tragedies like this already. We must act now to end our country's gun violence epidemic.
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) August 3, 2019
Kamala Harris repeated a pledge she put forward earlier in her campaign – she will give Congress 100 days to act on gun control and then if Congress fails to meet her demands, she will sign an executive order putting into effect universal background checks, pulling the licenses of gun shop owners who violate the law, and banning importation of assault weapons. The Washington Examiner has a YouTube video of her explanation of how she’ll grab guns, sending law enforcement door to door to do so.
Nancy Pelosi released a statement. The Speaker of the House directly pointed her finger at Republicans in the Senate and blamed them. Her response was the worst, other than Beto’s diatribe, in blatant politicization of a tragedy. She is the most powerful woman in America and next in line for the presidency should anything happen to the president and the vice-president. The country deserves much better than her inability to rise above brazen partisanship in times like this.
“Today’s horrific mass shooting in El Paso breaks the hearts of all Americans. Our prayers are with the friends and families of the victims and the entire El Paso community which has been devastated by this brutal act of terror and murder. We are grateful for the courage and heroism of our brave first responders who kept people safe and cared for those in need, and whose swift action brought the suspects into custody and prevented further harm.
“Too many families in too many communities have been forced to endure the daily horror of gun violence. Enough is enough. The Republican Senate’s continued inaction dishonors our solemn duty to protect innocent men, women and children, and end this epidemic once and for all.
“We will continue to insist on commonsense steps to keep our families and our communities safe. May it be a comfort to those grieving the loss of their loved ones that so many Americans mourn with and pray for them at this difficult time.”
Governor Greg Abbott issued a measured, sincere statement. He sounded like a responsible person in charge.
“Today, the El Paso community was struck by a heinous and senseless act of violence. Our hearts go out to the victims of this horrific shooting and to the entire community in this time of loss. While no words can provide the solace needed for those impacted by this event, I ask that all Texans join Cecilia and me in offering our prayers for the victims and their families. The state of Texas and the Department of Public Safety are assisting the El Paso Police Department as they conduct their investigation. We have deployed troopers, special agents, Texas Rangers, tactical teams, and aircraft to the scene in a support role. The state of Texas will do everything it can to ensure justice is delivered to the perpetrators of this heinous act.”
Later, Governor Abbott called for a focus on “memorials before we start the politics.”
Texas Gov. Abbott on the issue of gun violence after El Paso mass shooting attack: "I think we need to focus more on memorials before we start the politics." https://t.co/HV7Nn4MSVz pic.twitter.com/ZQ8amuS1SQ
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) August 4, 2019
It is a tax-free weekend for shoppers preparing children to return to school. Back-to-school items such as school supplies, clothing, backpacks, and the like can be purchased without state sales tax to give families a tax break. The shopping mall and WalMart were packed with shoppers on a sunny Saturday. There were some true heroes, like this member of the military who happened to be there and rushed to get some kids to safety.
Glen Oakley, who was near the El Paso Walmart, is in the military and he rushed to protect children during the shooting pic.twitter.com/FCpoZAInBv
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) August 3, 2019
While Alyssa Milano was quick to scold WalMart on guns sales, she was quickly corrected on her ignorance.
If people did a scintilla of research instead offering up knee jerk reactions like this, we’d all be better off. Walmart stopped selling firearms like this in 2015 and they only sell handguns in their Alaska stores. https://t.co/ApVUbqybkR
— Jay Caruso (@JayCaruso) August 3, 2019
1. Raised the age of any firearm purchase to 21
2. Won’t allow a sale until a background check is completed. Federal law allows the sale to go through after 3 days without a denial.
3. Does not sell bump stocks or high capacity magazines
— Jay Caruso (@JayCaruso) August 3, 2019
The people of El Paso responded in a big way to the call for blood donors. El Paso is a strong, community-oriented city. It’s a safe city, too. It is listed as the safest city of its size. The murderer traveled from north Texas to do this. Praise the heroes.
El Pasoans lining up to donate blood.
The line stretches around the building.
Volunteers lining up to give them water.
White, black, brown, old, young, so many backgrounds all lining up to help.
Look for the heroes.
— Muhammad Lila (@MuhammadLila) August 4, 2019