President Donald Trump said Tuesday that the US will “be talking about gun laws as time goes by” in the wake of the Las Vegas shooting, the nation’s deadliest in modern history.
“Look, we have a tragedy … and what happened in Las Vegas is in many ways a miracle. The police department has done such an incredible job,” Trump said at the White House before he left for Puerto Rico.
The President was asked about a gun bill currently making its way through the House that would loosen restrictions on purchasing gun silencers. Trump said that he would talk about that later.
He was also asked if the massacre, which killed at least 59 and injured hundreds of others, could have been prevented. Though he didn’t answer the question directly, he characterized the shooter as “a sick man, a demented man” and added that “we’re looking into him very, very seriously.”
He didn’t answer when reporters pressed him about whether the shooting was an act of “domestic terrorism.”
Trump previously addressed the nation in a somber speech on Monday morning, labeling the shooting “pure evil.”
On Monday, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders became emotional when discussing the shooting but dismissed talk of gun control when pressed by reporters.
“There’s a time and place for a political debate, but now is the time to unite as a country,” Sanders said. “There’s currently an open and ongoing law enforcement investigation, a motive is yet to be determined and it would be premature for us to discuss policy when we don’t fully know all the facts or what took place last night.”
The shooting is unlikely to sufficiently shake up well-worn gun politics to produce meaningful changes in the nation’s gun laws, even though public support for more regulation typically spikes after mass shootings.
In fact, with Republicans monopolizing power in the White House and in Congress, chances of reform appear less promising for Democrats than when President Barack Obama failed to do so after the Sandy Hook school massacre in 2012.