Democratic candidates are hitting President Trump—and hitting him hard—after two mass shootings gut-punched America over the weekend. Beto O'Rourke appeared on CNN's State of the Union: "Let's be very clear about what is causing this and who the president is," said the former congressman, whose home state of Texas saw 20 killed at a Walmart on Sunday; the El Paso sheriff has linked an online anti-immigrant manifesto to the shooter. "[Trump] is an open avowed racist and encouraging more racism in this country." O'Rourke also compared Trump's words to those of the Nazis when he said there were "very fine people" among KKK members and neo-Nazis in the Charlottesville riots, the Hill reports. For more, including GOP reactions:
- 'Toxic brew': "He's given license for this toxic brew of white supremacy to fester more and more in this country," said Julian Castro on ABC's This Week, per Politico. "And we're seeing the results of that."
- 'Seeds of Hate': "In my faith, I have this belief that you reap what you sow and [Trump] is sowing seeds of hate in this country," said Sen. Cory Booker on NBC's Meet the Press, per NBC News. "This harvest of hate violence we're seeing right now lies at his feet."
- 'White nationalism': "It is very clear that the loss of American life ... is symptomatic of the effects of white nationalist terrorism," Pete Buttigieg said on Fox News Sunday, per Fox News. "There's no question white nationalism is condoned at the highest levels of our government."
- 'Sick people': "This is a serious problem—there's no question about it—but they are sick, sick people, and the president knows it," Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney said on This Week, per Real Clear Politics. "I don't think it's fair to try and lay this at the feet of the president."
- 'Uniter in chief': "I think [Trump]'s denounced these attacks," said Rep. Will Hurd, R-Texas, on CBS' Face the Nation, per the Hill. "He has an opportunity to be a uniter in chief, and I hope that's the way to go."
- 'Two things we should do': "Mitch McConnell should bring us back into session on Monday" to pass a bill for universal background checks, said Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, on Face the Nation, per CBS News. "We know that a ban on assault weapons worked. ... Those are the first two things we should do."
- 'Video games': "The idea that these video games that dehumanize individuals ... [include] shooting individuals," said House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy on Fox News' Sunday Morning Futures, per USA Today. "I've always felt that it's a problem for future generations and others."
- 'Declined': State of the Union host Jake Tapper called out top Republican officials and lawmakers for not appearing on his show. "We also asked the White House to provide someone to discuss these shootings," he said, per CNN. "That request too was declined."
(See how the federal government is viewing the Texas shooting