Donald Trump was in Japan when Devin Kelley killed 26 people in Sutherland Springs, Texas. While he was busy avoiding any and all Japanese food, President Trump was updated as the situation developed. Now, Trump believes that he knows enough about the shooting to say that gun control would not have helped.
When asked whether he would be advocating for “extreme vetting” the same way he did when a man named Sayfullo Saipov drove down a New York City sidewalk, killing eight people, Trump said no. He said that extreme vetting would have made no difference here. Continuing the standard Trump administration line, the president thinks that banning people from the nation based on their religion will work to curb violent crime, but banning weapons that allow anybody to easily acquire a way to murder dozens of people would be ineffective.
Good Morning America
quotes the president as saying:
“If you did what you’re suggesting, there would have been no difference three days ago,” Trump said, before turning to praise the actions of a bystander who engaged the shooter following his rampage. “You might not have had that very brave person who happened to have a gun or a rifle in his truck, go out and shoot him and hit him and neutralize him.”
Trump went on to say that if Kelley’s neighbor hadn’t also had a gun, “hundreds more” could have died in the incident. He somehow thinks that in a shooting where 26 people died, this was the optimal outcome—that we’re lucky it wasn’t worse.