Texas Officials React to Conn. School Shooting (Updated)
Details surrounding the elementary school shooting in Newton, Connecticut are still unfolding. The Associated Press cites a police source reporting 27 dead, including 18 children. You can follow updates in a live blog from NPR, and get real time coverage from Google News.
Elected officials in Texas are beginning to issue statements about the shooting. KUT News has compiled them below; we will update this post as more come in.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry:
“The horrific event that transpired at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut is as profoundly disturbing as it is impossible to fully understand. The fact that so many victims were children weighs heavily upon the hearts and souls of each Texan and every American. Anita and I send our personal condolences to everyone touched by this senseless tragedy, pray for the quick healing of those injured, and extend our hopes that time will help ease the suffering of those who lost loved ones.”
Texas Attorney Gen. Greg Abbott:
"The senseless and cowardly shooting in Connecticut reminds us all of the vigilance we must maintain to protect our children in their schools. I pray for the victims, their families and the Newtown community as they deal with this horrendous tragedy. As a board member of the Texas School Safety Center, I am committed to making sure educators, students and law enforcement are working together to prepare Texas schools for the unthinkable. We must not wait until it's too late to act. We remind all schools to review their school safety plan to ensure they have proper procedures to keep students and campuses safe."
Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson (in remarks to Houston Chronicle, “Texas Land Commissioner: Schools should have armed personnel”):
"The common denominator for the school shootings in Aurora, Columbine and Virginia Tech is that we have a target-rich environment … You have a shooter that is completely free to go about his sick fantasy. We need to do what it takes to change that." "Had there been (armed security guard and citizens) in Colorado, at Virginia Tech or now in Connecticut – someone that could have changed the dynamic and to do so by having a firearm – there would be fewer lives lost."
Texas Comptroller Susan Combs (via Twitter)
"Our thoughts & prayers are with all those affected by the horrible tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut."
U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (via Twitter)
"Thoughts & prayers with the families, teachers, and entire community of Newtown, CT on this tragic day"
U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (via Twitter)
“Please keep your thoughts and prayers with those affected by the school shooting in Connecticut today”
U.S Representative-Elect Pete Gallego (via Twitter):
"Can't imagine the pain of losing a child - so innocent & young. What a senseless act! My heart & prayers are w/ victims & their families. Hug you children as soon as they get home from school-& say a prayer for those parents who won't get to do that today. How horrific."
Texas State Sen. Leticia Van De Putte (via Twitter)
"My prayers go out to the parents and children in Connecticut."