A number of US lawmakers have offered thoughts and prayers to the families of the victims following the shooting at a Texas elementary school that killed 21 people. However, some of them are the same politicians who have taken thousands or even millions of dollars from the National Rifle Association (NRA) over the years.
Gunman Salvador Ramos’ shooting spree, which killed 19 children and two adults at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas on Tuesday, was the deadliest shooting at a school since the Sandy Hook ground massacre in 2012.
It reignited calls from gun control groups for stricter gun laws to prevent more mass shootings in the future. These efforts met with opposition from the NRA, the gun lobby group with more than five million members in the US.
Each year, the NRA spends approximately $3 million on gun rights advocacy, including giving money to Republican lawmakers in the expectation that they will oppose gun control measures.
Topping the list is Utah Senator Mitt Romney, who has received more than $13 million. Referring to the Texas school shooting, Romney wrote: “Grief overcomes the soul. children slaughtered. life wiped out. Parents’ hearts were torn apart. Incomprehensible. I offer prayers and condolences, but I know that it is completely insufficient. We have to find answers.’
Meanwhile, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas received more than $176,000 from the NRA. Cruz described the massacre in Uvalde as “really appalling”.
“Heidi and I uplift the entire Uvalde community in prayer at this devastating time and we mourn the lives that have been taken as a result of this evil act,” Cruz said tweeted. “Thank you to the heroic law enforcement and first responders who acted so quickly.”
Cruz faced backlash from gun control groups and Democratic lawmakers.
“Raising Uvalde fervently to prayer while refusing to do anything to stop gun violence is why this keeps happening, especially in Texas.” tweeted Shannon Watts, founder of gun control group Moms Demand Action.
“In fact, @SenTedCruz has been spreading gun lobby lies about the ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives) director candidate while trying to stop a federal ban on ghost guns.”
Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez responded to Cruz’s tweet saying: “Wouldn’t you like to headline a speaking engagement for the NRA in three days — in Houston, no less?” You can do more than pray. Faith without works is dead.’
Below is a list of senators who took the most money from the NRA, according to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.
- Mitt Romney (Utah) $13,647,676
- Richard Burr (North Carolina) $6,987,380
- Roy Blunt (Missouri) $4,555,722
- Thom Tillis (North Carolina) $4,421,333
- Marco Rubio (Florida) $3,303,355
- Joni Ernst (Iowa) $3,124,773
- Rob Portman (Ohio) $3,063,327
- Todd C Young (Indiana) $2,897,582
- Bill Cassidy (Louisiana) $2,867,074
- Tom Cotton (Arkansas) $1,968,714
- Pat Toomey (Pennsylvania) $1,475,448
- Josh Hawley (Missouri) $1,391,548
- Marsha Blackburn (Tennessee) $1,306,130
- Ron Johnson (Wisconsin) $1,269,486
- Mitch McConnell (Kentucky) $1,267,139
- Mike Brown (Indiana) $1,249,967
- John Thune (South Dakota) $638,942
- Shelley Moore Capito (West Virginia) $341,738
- Richard Shelby (Alabama) $258,514
- Chuck Grassley (Iowa) $226,007
- John Neely Kennedy (Louisiana) $215,788
- Ted Cruz (Texas) $176,274
- Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) $146,262
- Steve Daines (Montana) $123,711
- Cindy Hyde-Smith (Mississippi) $109,547
- Roger Wicker (Mississippi) $106,680
- Rand Paul (Kentucky) $104,456
- Mike Rounds (South Dakota) $95,049
- John Boozman (Arkansas) $82,352
- John Cornyn (Texas) $78,945
- Ben Sasse (Nebraska) $68,623
- Jim Inhofe (Oklahoma) $66,758
- Lindsey Graham (South Carolina) $55,961
- Mike Crapo (Idaho) $55,039
- Jerry Moran (Kansas) $34,718
- John Barrasso (Wyoming) $26,989
- John Hoeven (North Dakota) $22,050
- Susan Collins (Maine) $19,638
- James Lankford (Oklahoma) $18,955
- Jim Risch (Idaho) $18,850
- Tim Scott (South Carolina) $18,513
- Kevin Cramer (North Dakota) $13,255
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https://metro.co.uk/2022/05/27/us-lawmakers-getting-nra-money-criticized-after-texas-school-shooting-16720280/ US lawmakers face criticism for NRA funds after Texas shooting