McCarthy Offers Prayers to Victims, Cautious Tone Following San Bernardino Attack

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (L), R-Wisconsin, listens as House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California, speaks to the press after a Republican Conference meeting in Washington, DC, November 3, 2015. AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read
Jim Watson/AFP/Getty

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) offered his thoughts and prayers to the victims of the San Bernardino shooting that left 14 dead Thursday but noted that the final motive has not yet been determined.

“What we watched — unbelievable. Our prayers, our thoughts — we would not want that to happen any place in America,” McCarthy told reporters after the House’s Task Force on Counterterrorism unveiled legislation to strengthen the security of the Visa Waiver Program.

McCarthy said that he does not yet know the shooters’ motives for the attack and stressed the  need for more information.

“I don’t know yet of why it took place,” McCarthy said. “I don’t think, from what it’s trending from the information we’re getting, I want to make sure we get all the information out, maybe that’s something this task force will have to look at as well.”

“But as of right now our hearts and prayers go to the families of the lost victims and also to those first responders putting their lives on the line too and the videos that we see coming out. We want to make sure we get all the information,” he added.

The alleged shooters — Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik — were killed by law enforcement following the attack.

McCarthy also highlighted Tim Murphy’s mental health legislation in light of other shootings.

“There had been a theme through a lot of the other shootings — I don’t know yet if that theme’s coming out of this one — it could be motivated in a different manner. To have the GoPro, to have the flack jacket, this seems very well planned,” he said, referencing some of the items the shooters are reported to have worn during the attack.

When asked about the calls from Democrats to consider legislation dealing with individuals on terrorist watch lists purchasing guns, McCarthy responded that the task force would be looking at “all ideas.”


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