ABC News(WASHINGTON) — President Donald Trump met with victims of Sunday’s mass shooting in Las Vegas Wednesday, three days after the attack that killed 58 and injured hundreds.
Trump declined to discuss gun control measures, even as a bill was introduced in Washington to outlaw the kind of equipment used by the shooter to accelerate his firing capabilities.
Asked by a reporter at the University Medical Center in Las Vegas if the United States has a “gun violence problem,” the president dismissed the question.
“We’re not going to talk about that today,” said Trump. “We won’t talk about that.”
On Monday, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said that the first days following the shooting were not the time for a “political debate,” but several Washington lawmakers and administration critics argued that action on the issue needed to take place immediately.
The president will meet with victims of Sunday night’s shooting, as well as first responders, medical professionals and local officials, according to his official schedule.
“We are joined together today in sadness, shock, and grief,” the president said the morning after the shooting. “It was an act of pure evil.”
“Scripture teaches us, ‘The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.’ We seek comfort in those words, for we know that God lives in the hearts of those who grieve,” he added.
Late Sunday evening, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock opened fire on a country music festival from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino — killing 58 and injuring hundreds more.
“He’s a sick man, a demented man. A lot of problems, I guess,” the president said of Paddock Tuesday. “We are looking into him very, very seriously. But we’re dealing with a very, very sick individual.”
This visit will mark the first time Trump is traveling to a city in the immediate aftermath of a mass shooting.
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