President Trump, who has previously called mass killers “geniuses” and “intelligent,” slammed the door on common sense gun control legislation in response to the mass shooting at a Texas church on Sunday by claiming that stricter gun laws could have left “hundreds more dead.”
During a news conference in Seoul, South Korea, Trump was asked if he would demand the same “extreme vetting” for gun buyers after the Texas church shooting that he demanded for immigrants after the NYC terror attack.
Here’s how Trump responded:
If you did what you’re suggesting, there would have been no difference three days ago, and you might not have had that very brave person who happened to have a gun or a rifle in his truck go out and shoot him, and hit him and neutralize him. And I can only say this: If he didn’t have a gun, instead of having 26 dead, you would have had hundreds more dead. So that’s the way I feel about it. Not going to help.
Trump’s claim echoes the National Rifle Association position after every deadly mass shooting: The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.
Trump said if local resident Stephen Willeford, who grabbed his own rifle and exchanged fire with the gunman, didn’t have a gun, “instead of having 26 dead, you would have had hundreds more dead.”
Authorities say the gunman, Devin Patrick Kelley, fired at least 450 rounds of ammunition at worshippers in Sunday’s attack at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs.
The gunman who killed 26 people, who ranged in age from 18 months to 77 years old, was able to buy weapons because the Air Force did not submit his criminal history to the FBI as required by military rules. The Air Force acknowledged Monday that if the past offenses by Kelley had been properly shared to the national database, they would have prevented him from buying a gun.
On Monday, Trump said the Texas massacre was a “.”