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WATCH: In Hearing On Mass Shootings, John Cornyn Wants To Talk About Anything Else

WATCH: In Hearing On Mass Shootings, John Cornyn Wants To Talk About Anything Else

Deflection is a major political strategy when Republicans are forced to face the realities of gun violence. There’s always something else to talk about — they’ll pull out such dog whistles as “Chicago” and “gang violence,” or insinuate that other problems, like drugs and immigration, are more serious and relevant.

UVALDE, TEXAS – JUNE 03: Flowers, plush toys and wooden crosses are placed at a memorial dedicated to the victims of the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School on June 3, 2022 in Uvalde, Texas. 19 students and two teachers were killed on May 24 after an 18-year-old gunman opened fire inside the school. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

That’s exactly, in fact, what Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) did during a Senate hearing on mass shootings on Wednesday.

Below is the type of testimony that was shared at the hearing — Nancy Rotering, Mayor of Highland Park, Illinois, where a Fourth of July parade was interrupted with gunfire that killed seven people, leaving dozens more injured.

Rotering describes the devastation, including small children clinging to life only through medical intervention, and individuals attending the funerals of loved ones while still suffering the effects of their own wounds. She emphasizes that because of the weapon the shooter was able to obtain, legally, it took him less than a minute to enact so much destruction and suffering.

Here’s what Senator Cornyn has to say — that instead of discussing mass shootings, at a hearing on mass shootings, in the Senate, where he was elected to serve, he’d rather hear about Chicago, gangs, the southern border, and drug overdoses.

“…the focus on the firearm, that we’ve heard so far, deflects our attention from other places where I think we could make a substantial difference. Things like focusing on the criminals that comitted 836 homicides last year in Chicago alone…I don’t hear any commentary about the 108 thousand Americans that died of drug overdoses last year…all those drugs come across the southern border…We have an open border…And it is the criminal gangs in cities across America that commit most of the violence using guns…”

Notably, while suggesting that a “substantial difference” could be made by addressing these issues instead of mass shootings, Cornyn did not offer any legislative suggestions to do so.

Statista has recorded 51 deaths and another 61 injuries in mass shootings in approximately the first half (up through July 4) of 2022. There are no statistics to accurately and completely count the number of victims traumatized by their proximity to these mass shootings.

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