TEXAS – During a press conference where Governor Greg Abbott was discussing the recent tragedy that took place in Uvalde, Texas, where multiple children and teachers were shot and killed by a deranged 18-year-old gunman, Robert “Beto” O’Rourke chose to detract from honoring and grieving for the dead and instead making the conference about gun control.
In the video, which can be viewed below, O’Rourke, who will undoubtedly be hailed a hero by anti-gun activists, gets up in front of Governor Abbott and several other officials and begins to demand that Abbott singlehandedly fix all gun violence in the state.
After Abbott spoke for about 10 minutes, he handed the microphone to Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick to speak. At that point, O’Rourke, who is running for Governor and ran a failed campaign for president, interrupted and continued spouting what we can only assume was nonsense (as much of what he said is inaudible) and aggressively pointing at the attendees on the stage.
Though most of what he said can’t be heard or made out clearly in the video, one can hear O’Rourke say that the shooting was “totally predictable” and “preventable.” He also said that Governor Abbott is “doing nothing” about it, and hinted that another mass shooting could happen in the future. He presumably meant without massive gun control measures, which he has advocated for unabashedly for years.
The New York Post wrote that the comments heard were, “The majority of Texas is not reflected by that governor or those people around the table who talk about mental health care and say that this is pure evil but that it is completely unpredictable. This is predictable. It will happen and it will continue to happen until we change course.”
As can be heard in the video, officials began shouting back at O’Rourke, telling him that he was “out of line,” and that he’s a “sick son of a bitch” for turning the conference meant to grieve and honor those lost into a political rally for gun control.
Abbott can be heard telling O’Rourke multiple times to sit down, which O’Rourke did not do. He kicked out of the meeting and escorted out of the auditorium by security.
After the outbreak, the House Speaker Dade Phelan said, “Now is not the time to politicize pain and suffering.”
The Governor, before being interrupted, confirmed the account of the incident and praised police response. He said that the now-deceased suspect, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos, first shot his grandmother before leaving his house in his vehicle, which he crashed outside of Robb Elementary School.
Police were quickly on scene and exchanged gunfire with Ramos before he entered the school. They were able to shoot and kill Ramos, stopping the threat, within minutes, but unfortunately that was not in time to save 19 children and two teachers. Seventeen others were also injured.
Abbot said that the actions of the police officers prevented even worse results. Two officers were shot and suffered non-life-threatening injuries. He also said that another officer who responded to the scene lost a daughter to the gunshots.
Following his outbreak, O’Rourke also called on Abbott to cancel his appearance scheduled at the NRA conference in Houston next Tuesday.