Friday, July 20, 2012



  {USA Today} President Obama paid tribute to the victims of today's Colorado shooting tragedy and asked for Americans to pray for the people of the Denver suburb where the movie theater shooting spree happened.
Obama's remarks came in Ft. Myers, Fla., where he was scheduled to speak at a campaign event. But Obama spoke only briefly and centered his comments on the tragedy.

"There are going to be other days for politics," Obama said. "This is a day for prayer and reflection."
Obama said after he was briefed about the shooting early Friday morning, he immediately thought of his two daughters, who like most young people enjoy going to the movies.
"If there is any take away from this, it's that life is fragile," Obama said "Our time here is limited and it's precious."

Vice President Biden and First Lady Michelle Obama have also canceled their events today, said Obama campaign spokeswoman Jen Psaki. The first lady was scheduled to travel to Virginia for two events and Biden was supposed to appear at a campaign event in Houston.
In a statement, Biden said he knows "what it's like to wait and wonder and the helplessness a parent feels at this moment." Biden lost his first wife, Neilia, and his daughter, Naomi, in a car accident in 1972. His two sons were injured in the crash but survived.

"The reason this is so deeply felt by all Americans is that, but for the grace of God, the victims could have been any one of our children, in any one of our towns," Biden said in a statement. "It is every parent's worst nightmare to receive 'that phone call' and to sit by their child's bedside, praying."
Obama also spoke with Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and the mayor of Aurora, the Denver suburb where the shooting occurred.

"We do not believe at this point there was an apparent nexus to terrorism," said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney.

Psaki said that Obama campaign officials have asked affiliates in Colorado to pull down "contrast ads" for the time being. The Mitt Romney campaign has also pulled advertising in the Colorado market, said Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul.
"It takes time for stations to be able to do this, but we are making every effort," Psaki said.
The Romney campaign said the likely GOP nominee will also address the Colorado incident today at a previously scheduled campaign event. Both Romney and his wife, Ann, have also canceled scheduled events.

In a statement earlier today, Obama called the shooting "horrific and tragic" and said his administration stands ready to help the people of Aurora, Colo.

"We are committed to bringing whoever was responsible to justice, ensuring the safety of our people, and caring for those who have been wounded," Obama said. "As we do when confronted by moments of darkness and challenge, we must now come together as one American family. All of us must have the people of Aurora in our thoughts and prayers as they confront the loss of family, friends, and neighbors, and we must stand together with them in the challenging hours and days to come."

The President was notified of the shooting by his deputy national security adviser for homeland security and counterterrorism, John Brennan, at 5:26 a.m. EST, Carney said. Obama received a follow-briefing shortly before he spoke from FBI Director Robert Mueller, White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew and Brennan, Carney said.
Obama was in Florida on the second day of a two-day campaign trip.

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