Presidential Candidates, Gun Lobbyists React to Colorado Shooting
WASHINGTON, DC (WENY) -- It’s not business as usual in Washington, D.C. or on the presidential campaign trail as a result of Friday’s Colorado movie theater shootings.
The incident is also thrusting the messages of pro-and-anti-gun lobbies – based in our nation’s capital – back in to the spotlight.
“There are going to be other days for politics. This, I think, is a day for prayer and reflection,” said President Obama, at what was supposed to be a campaign rally in Florida Friday morning.
The president led the crowd in a moment of silence for the victims of the shooting, canceled a second Florida event, and returned to Washington. The White House also canceled campaign stops for First Lady Michelle Obama in Virginia and Vice-President Joe Biden in Texas. Later, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney echoed the president’s sentiments, before canceling the rest of his events for the day.
“This is a time for each of us to look into our hearts, and remember how much we love one another, and how much we care for our great country,” said Romney.
“We’re shocked by it. Sadly, we’re not surprised by it,” said Ladd Everitt of the DC-based gun-control lobby Coalition to Stop Gun Violence.
Everitt says the current background check regulations aren’t enough.
“There are so many cases where people are buying are legally buying guns who aren’t ‘close calls.’ They’re clearly a threat to themselves and others. And it’s just sad to see it happen once again,” he said.
“Gun control cannot stop lunatics from going on a rampage, unfortunately,” said John Velleco from Gun Owners of America.
Velleco says more gun control could make future incidents even worse, “because you could reduce the number of good guys who might be armed who can defend themselves and their families and others around them.”
One thing both sides of the gun lobby can agree on – they want to see all the facts in this case. And right now, there are still a lot more questions than answers.
The Romney campaign is pulling all its political ads from Colorado TV stations, while the president’s camp says it’ll pull “contrast ads.”