Gun violence at the Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas eclipsed election night on Tuesday. More than 20 people were shot and killed in a massacre while ballots were being cast just outside the city.
Texas’ 28th congressional district had two runoff elections underway. Candidates rushed to their social media handles to make statements and condemn the attack. But politics still went on.
Attorney General Ken Paxton, who was on the ballot on Tuesday, was quick to reaffirm his position on gun laws in the United States. Citing his Second Amendment rights, Paxton said that educational institutes should have on-site armed police officers to curb such incidents. US Senator Ted Cruz backed this idea.
Texas governor Greg Abbott, who is up for reelection in the upcoming midterms in November, focused on making announcements after the shooting. The Republican lawmaker, who is also an active member of the National Rifle Association, was mum on gun rights.
The SSGT Willie de Leon Civic Center in Uvalde was arguably the most horror-filled site in Texas on Tuesday. Early in the day, the center was used as a polling place in the runoff elections. Hours later, parents were seen flocking to the building to know if their children were still alive.
The shockwaves of the mass shooting rippled far beyond Texas. Herschel Walker, a GOP Senate candidate in Georgia, postponed his victory speech after securing a comfortable win in the primary elections. Walker, before giving his speech, requested a moment of silence for the victims of the Uvalde school shooting.
Authorities identified Salvador Ramos as the gunman who killed 19 children and two teachers in the violent attack. Law enforcement officers also shot down the suspect.
Ramos, who reportedly carried an AR-15-style semi-automatic rifle, shared his plans on social media minutes before he went on the rampage, Texas governor Abbott said.