Sun Sentinel: Wasserman Schultz to Donald Trump: Mass shooting 'blood is on your hands’
"He has given white supremacists and hateful violent bigots permission to come out from the shadows and act on their hatred."SUN SENTINEL
Wasserman Schultz to Donald Trump: Mass shooting 'blood is on your hands’
By Anthony Man
U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz forcefully condemned President Donald Trump on Monday for his response to the weekend mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton and for creating an atmosphere she said contributed to such rampages.
After so many mass shootings, “something is seriously wrong. And it’s on your hands. It’s on your watch, and the blood is on your hands,” Wasserman Schultz said in a telephone interview with the South Florida Sun Sentinel.
“While mentioning white supremacy is an issue, and saying that we needed to go after white supremacy online, he also needs to take responsibility for the flames that he has fanned, and the permission that he has given for the people who used to be in the underbelly of America and the permission he has given white supremacists and hateful violent bigots to come out from the shadows and act on their hatred,” she said.
The Broward/Miami-Dade County Democrat has long been critical of the president. But her comments Monday were especially pointed.
She said the president failed to focus on the thing that’s mainly responsible for so many deaths: guns. “It is absolutely revolting and outrageous for the president to suggest that every other societal ill is to blame except for the weapons,” she said.
Wasserman Schultz also noted that during his televised remarks Trump referred to Dayton, the Ohio city where Sunday’s mass shooting happened, as Toledo. “Add the insult to injury was that this man doesn’t even care enough about the issue ... the guy couldn’t even get the city right.”
Wasserman Schultz said Trump’s rhetoric as a candidate and since he became president has fanned the flames of hostility toward immigrants. She pointed to his May 8 rally in Panama City Beach.
While lamenting what he saw as the problem of migrants and asylum seekers attempting to cross the southern U.S. border, complaining that U.S. authorities don’t use weapons at the border and asking out loud “how do you stop these people?” a person in the audience yelled out “Shoot them!”
Trump’s response: “That’s only in the Panhandle, you can get away with that statement. Only in the Panhandle.”
Wasserman Schultz said Trump was way out of line.
“The president seems to think totally incorrectly that we are more in danger from undocumented immigrants who are simply coming here to make a better life for themselves than we are from deranged shooters who have had their sentiments inflamed by his rhetoric and the rhetoric of his supporters. The man laughed at a rally in our state, and shrugged off someone who said that we should shoot people who are trying to immigrate to this country, and laughed and said you can only get away with that in the Panhandle.”
Wasserman Schultz also faulted Republicans who control the Senate.
“They need to grow a spine. They need to care more about living Americans than they do about holding onto their power,” she said.
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