White House talking points on Las Vegas shooting downplay gun control
Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON)– A list of talking points compiled by the White House in the aftermath of Sunday’s mass shooting in Las Vegas deemphasizes the role that gun control legislation could play in preventing future attacks while calling for patience to allow the investigation to run its course.
The talking points, distributed to supporters of the administration, echo comments made earlier in the week by White House press secretary Sarah Sanders, who said Monday that the immediate aftermath of the shooting was not the time to hold a “political debate.”
The notes on gun control specifically portray the White House’s position as wanting to wait to have such discussions until the facts are gathered “before we make sweeping policy arguments for curtailing the Second Amendment.”
Earlier Wednesday, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., introduced a bill banning bump-stock equipment that can be used to alter firearms to allow them to fire semi-automatically.
Here is the full list of administration talking points:
Las Vegas shooting:
The President’s thoughts and prayers are with the hundreds of victims who were killed and injured in this senseless act of violence.
We are monitoring the situation closely and offer our full support to state and local officials.
All of those affected are in our thoughts and prayers.
The FBI, Justice Department and Department of Homeland Security are working with local law enforcement officials to determine the facts surrounding this tragedy, and it wouldn’t be appropriate to start having a political debate before we even know the facts, less than 24 hours after local law enforcement and first responders arrived on the scene.
The FBI has said there is no evidence of a link between the suspect and an international terrorist organization at this time.
Let’s gather the facts before we make sweeping policy arguments for curtailing the Second Amendment. The investigation is still in its earliest stages.
The Second Amendment has endured for more than two centuries for a reason: it is a key constitutional right that is meant to protect people’s freedoms, and the President understands that.
The President believes that our founding principles, like freedom of speech, freedom of religion and the right to bear arms must be protected while maintaining public safety.
We welcome a reasoned and well-informed debate on public safety and our constitutional freedoms, but we reject the false choice that we can’t have both.
And when it comes to gun control, let’s be clear: new laws won’t stop a mad man committed to harming innocent people. They will curtail the freedoms of law-abiding citizens.
We’ve seen terrorist attacks committed with knives, by people driving cars into crowds, and hijacking airplanes.
And some of America’s cities with the strictest gun laws have the highest rates of gun violence. Examples include: Chicago last year had over 4,300 shooting victim; Baltimore last year had over 900 shooting victims.
This shows that more laws on the books may not work. The problems in these cities and many others isn’t too few gun laws.
Also, we’ve had examples where concealed carry has allowed people to protect themselves and stop a mass shooting in its tracks, such as last month in a church in Texas.
Again, we welcome this debate, but in the wake of Sunday night’s tragedy, we shouldn’t rush toward compromising our freedoms before we have all the facts.
Some of the unknowns we must learn from investigators:
What motivated this individual?
Did he have radical ties?
Did he have mental health issues?
How was his weapon obtained?
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