Senator Richard Blumenthal called Sunday’s church shooting in Texas an “act of evil.”
“My heart and prayers go out to the loved ones of these families but prayers are not enough and now is the time for action,” said Blumenthal at a news conference in Hartford Monday. “Congress has been complicit in these kinds of mass shootings.”
At least 26 people were killed when one gunman opened fire with a Ruger assault rifle at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs -- a town about 32 miles southeast of San Antonio. Local law enforcement have said the shooting was related to a domestic situation within the gunman’s family.
President Donald Trump said a mental health problem was to blame. But Blumenthal said that the mental health of the shooter should not be an excuse for what happened.
“We need to provide more mental health services, more treatment, more places that people can go and seek to resolve mental health issues,” Blumenthal said. “But we also need common-sense steps to stop gun violence.”
He said that while he understood gun reform may not happen in this legislative session, he hoped that the public outcry from this event could be channeled into better background checks and a ban on bump stocks -- a device that allows a weapon to fire faster.