Sen. Bill Nelson (D): “Our thoughts and prayers are with all the victims of this horrific attack. As the investigation continues, we will learn more about what led to this tragedy in Las Vegas, but at some point we, as a society, have to stand up and say enough is enough.”
In Miami, Sen. Marco Rubio (R) told reporters the Las Vegas shooting was “a horrible tragedy.”
“An individual acquired weaponry and used it to kill people, and it’s terrible,” Rubio said. “We don’t know the motivation. We’ll learn more in the days to come, and if there’s public policy that could have prevented an attack like that, then we most certainly would consider it. The problem with many of the recommendations I’ve heard in the past is that frankly they would not have prevented any of the attacks.... But I think we need to learn more about what happened in Las Vegas. What we know now is that it’s been a horrible tragedy, and it appears now to be the largest mass-casualty event -- shooting -- in American history.”
Gov. Rick Scott opened his Latin America summit in Miami on Monday by asking for a moment of silence for the Las Vegas shooting victims.
“Your heart goes out to everybody, every family member that’s been impacted,” he said. “I think back to what happened in the Pulse attack, and just sitting down with those families -- there’s no words that can console anybody. You never understand the evil in the world, why somebody would do something like this.”
Scott later told reporters, “It’s just so senseless.... I’m praying for the people that are injured, and I hope they all survive. It had to be traumatic to be there.”
Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fort Walton Beach: “Last night, Las Vegas suffered a terrible attack. A gunman opened fire on innocent people at a concert, killing many and injuring many more. As a nation, we are grateful for the response of law enforcement, first responders, and the brave men and women who risked their own safety in order to protect and assist their fellow Americans. My thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected by this tragedy.”
Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Tampa: “I am shocked and saddened by the horrific act of gun violence in Las Vegas. I am praying for the victims and their families and know many across the Tampa Bay area are doing the same. Day in and day out, too many American families suffer the consequences of our country’s gun violence epidemic. Certainly, we can come together to pass common sense safety requirements such as background checks and limits on civilian use of military-style weapons, and to enforce the laws on the books. The sorrow that I and so many around the country feel for the innocent men and women whose lives were cruelly cut short by this heartless act of domestic terrorism is immeasurable. We will never allow these acts of terror to control us – but after so many lives lost around our country for so long by public acts of gun violence, we must ask ourselves why this is allowed to continue. We owe it to the victims of these horrible acts of gun violence to take steps that will ensure more innocent lives are not lost to future tragedies.”
Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar: “Just last year, our nation witnessed what was at the time the worst mass shooting in our history. It is beyond tragic that we are once again confronted by the unspeakable evil of mass shootings in America. As details of this tragedy emerge, there is no question that this shooting must reshape our nation’s conversation about guns.
“More than 33,000 people will die from gun violence this year. And unfortunately, the overwhelming majority of Americans killed every day by gun violence never garner ‘breaking news’ headlines.
“Republican Members of Congress have a bad habit of ignoring the devastation brought by gun violence, siding instead with the extreme voices of their party. With each new tragedy that occurs, those who stand in the way of legislation to address our country’s gun violence epidemic are increasingly culpable for its continuation. Today, we come together as a nation to sadly mourn those who lost their lives in this tragic and senseless violence. Let us finally act with a unified voice and with the necessary resolve to stem the tide of gun violence in America once and for all.”
Rep. Neal Dunn, R-Panama City: “Leah and I were heartbroken to hear of the tragic events that claimed so many lives in Las Vegas last night. We are praying for all who were affected by this tragedy. Thank you to all of the officers and first responders who immediately took action. Their bravery saved countless lives.”
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Weston: “While we mourn for the victims, families, survivors and first responders who went through this horrific tragedy in Las Vegas, we cannot stop the conversation there. There was an airport mass shooting in my community in January, and Orlando’s Pulse tragedy is a fresh, painful memory. Now we have a new ‘worst-ever gun-shooting’ tragedy before us. Congress must send more than thoughts and prayers. It must act, and immediately adopt sensible gun control measures. Every Member of Congress has a moral obligation to take immediate action to prevent these senseless gun deaths from happening yet again.”
Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Miami Gardens: “Today millions of Americans awakened to the stunning news of what is now known as the largest mass shooting in recent U.S. history. This tragic event, which took place in Las Vegas, Nevada, and left more than 50 people dead and injured more than 500 others, should also be a wake-up call to U.S. House and Senate lawmakers to pass legislation to ban assault weapons, like the bill I co-sponsored in the last Congress.
Just a little over a year ago, the nation mourned the mass shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, during which 49 people were killed and 53 were injured, making it at the time the deadliest mass shooting in recent history.
I cannot think of a single justification for allowing civilian individuals to own semiautomatic assault weapons, which were created for use in war to kill as many people as possible as quickly as possible. To those who can, I ask the following question:
How many people must have their lives cut short or changed forever before lawmakers act to end the sale of these weapons and pass other common-sense gun control legislation so that tragedies such as the one that took place last night do not begin to lose their shock value--or better yet, never happen again?”
Reporting from Miami contributed by the Herald’s Patricia Mazzei.