Trump decried Sunday’s Las Vegas mass-shooting that killed 58 and injured hundreds as “an act of pure evil” and called for unity on Monday at the White House.
The remarks came in response to the massacre at a country music festival near the Las Vegas Strip that featured the likes of Jason Aldean, Eric Church, and Sam Hunt. It is the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history.
“My fellow Americans, we are joined together today in sadness, shock, and grief. Last night, a gunman opened fire on a large crowd at a country music concert in Las Vegas, Nevada. He brutally murdered more than 50 people and wounded hundreds more. It was an act of pure evil,” Trump said.
Trump said that he will travel to Las Vegas on Wednesday to meet with those affected by the tragedy, including law enforcement officials and first responders.
“I want to thank the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department and all of the first responders for their courageous efforts, and for helping to save the lives of so many. The speed with which they acted is miraculous, and prevented further loss of life,” Trump said. “To have found the shooter so quickly after the first shots were fired is something for which we will always be thankful and grateful.”
After recognizing first responders, he called on the country to find common ground.
“In moments of tragedy and horror, America comes together as one — and it always has. We call upon the bonds that unite us — our faith, our family, and our shared values. We call upon the bonds of citizenship, the ties of community, and the comfort of our common humanity,” Trump said.
Trump wrapped up the statement by emphasizing the importance of faith in troubled times.
“We pray for the entire nation to find unity and peace. And we pray for the day when evil is banished, and the innocent are safe from hatred and from fear,” Trump said. “May God bless the souls of the lives that are lost.”
Before making his remarks in the White House Diplomatic Room, he shared his condolences on Twitter.
My warmest condolences and sympathies to the victims and families of the terrible Las Vegas shooting. God bless you!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 2, 2017
Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that the President will still visit Puerto Rico on Tuesday to assess the damage of Hurricane Maria.