On Tuesday, Texas police reported that at least 19 students and two adults at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, had been killed in a shooting.
The potentially horrific scale of the tragedy immediately brought to mind this month’s mass shooting at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, that left 10 dead, as well as the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting that resulted in 26 deaths, including 20 elementary-school-age children.
It was initially reported that 18-year-old shooter, Salvador Ramos, was a student at the local high school and that, prior to the Robb Elementary shooting, he had killed his grandmother. It was later reported that he had shot his grandmother, who was still alive and in serious condition. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott also said that the shooter had been killed by police.
As the New York Times reported, Thursday was scheduled to be the last day of school for Robb Elementary, and Friday was its graduation. According to its website, the school teaches second through fourth graders in the community, which is located a little more than an hour outside of San Antonio, and has approximately 16,000 residents.
An image of Ramos has been released:
Sen. Chris Murphy of Connecticut, one of the Senate’s most avid supporters of legislation to curb gun violence since the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in his home state, went to the Senate floor to plead for sensible legislation on guns.
“Just days after a shooter walked into a grocery store to gun down African American patrons, we have another Sandy Hook on our hands,” Murphy said. “Why do you spend all this time running for the United States, why do you go through all this hassle of getting this job, of putting yourself in a position of authority, if your answer is that as the slaughter increases, as the kid runs for their lives, we do nothing?
“I’m here on this floor to beg, to literally get down on my hands and knees and beg my colleagues: Find a path forward here. Work with us to find a way to pass laws that make this less likely,” Murphy pleaded.
“By doing something we at least stop sending this quiet message of endorsement to these killers whose brains are breaking, who see the highest levels of government doing nothing shooting after shooting. What are doing? Why are we here? What are we doing?”
Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin, who supported the last major effort to pass slightly more stringent federal gun control laws after the Sandy Hook massacre only to see that legislation filibustered in the Senate, said “you would think there would be enough common sense” to pass a bill to address the issue in the evenly divided Senate. He added that he would not alter his opposition to ending the filibuster to do so, though, even as Republicans already indicated their own opposition to any such gun legislation.
This is a breaking news story and has been updated with new information as it became available.