The morning after alleged gunman Stephen Paddock opened fire on the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas on Sunday night, President Trump addressed the nation from the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House for the second time. (His previous, and first, address from the room concerned the June mass shooting at the GOP congressional baseball team’s practice game.) Earlier, the president tweeted an initial response to the horrific incident. “My warmest condolences and sympathies to the victims and families of the terrible Las Vegas shooting,” he wrote. “God bless you!” His spoken remarks were even more measured.
“My fellow Americans, we are joined together today in sadness, shock and grief,” said Trump. Without naming Paddock, the president noted the suspect “brutally murdered more than 50 people and wounded hundreds more” and called the incident “an act of pure evil.” Continuing, Trump said the “FBI and the Department of Homeland Security are working closely with local authorities to assist with the investigation, and they will provide updates as to the investigation and how it develops.” He also gave thanks to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department and “all the first responders for their courageous efforts, and for helping to save the lives of so many.”
The president, who is currently scheduled to visit the devastated island of Puerto Rico on Tuesday, concluded the brief address by saying he will also be visiting Las Vegas the day after. “I will be visiting Las Vegas on Wednesday to meet with law enforcement, first responders and the families of the victims,” he said. “In moments of tragedy and horror, America comes together as one, and it always has.”