A 21-year-old white nationalist opened fire on strangers in a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, invoking what he called "the Hispanic invasion of Texas" as he killed 22 people.
President Trump said the victims of the shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, over the weekend can not die in vain and suggested Democrats and Republicans work together, tying background checks and immigration reform so that something positive will come from the attacks.
Legislation calling for stronger background checks on would-be gun purchasers passed in February in the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives but have not even been put to a vote in the Republican-led Senate.
Trump, back at the White House after remaining largely out of view for two days at his New Jersey golf club, declared the shootings in Texas and OH barbaric crimes "against all humanity" and called for unity to respond to an epidemic of gun violence.
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In the El Paso attack, investigators are focusing on whether it was a hate crime after the emergence of a racist, anti-immigrant screed that was posted online shortly beforehand. "These sinister ideologies must be defeated".
During his administration, Barack Obama often brought thoughtfulness and raw emotion in addressing mass shootings, particularly Sandy Hook, during which he began to tear up while describing the children who were lost at a press conference. "We have to put a stop to it".
"We should soundly reject language coming out of the mouths of any of our leaders that feeds a climate of fear and hatred or normalizes racist sentiments; leaders who demonize those who don't look like us, or suggest that other people, including immigrants, threaten our way of life, or refer to other people as sub-human, or imply that America belongs to just one certain type of people", Obama said in his statement. Fake News has contributed greatly to the anger and rage that has built up over many years. Roughly two dozen other people were wounded.
Democrats said Trump was indirectly to blame for the attack in Texas, with some drawing connections between his rhetoric to a resurgence in nationalism and xenophobic sentiment.
"It took less than three hours for the president to back off his call for stronger background check legislation", they said in a joint statement.
However, Trump drew criticism for mixing up the location of the Dayton shooting with another OH city in the same speech.