California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday was pulled away to be briefed on the state's second mass killing in three days while meeting with victims of the first one.
Newsom met with victims of a weekend mass shooting at a Monterey Park ballroom dance hall, where police say 72-year-old Huu Can Tran killed 11 and injured nine others before he was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Newsom's meeting was interrupted by shootings in Half Moon Bay, where seven Chinese farmworkers were killed in two separate locations, according to NBC Bay Area. 67-year-old Half Moon Bay resident Chunli Zhao, who was a worker at one of the facilities and knew at least some of the victims, was arrested in the shooting, according to the Associated Press.
Newsom while meeting with victims of the Monterey Park shooting called out Fox News, accusing the right-wing network of "not doing a damn thing about gun safety, not a damn thing for decades."
"It's a disgrace what they say, what these people say every single night," Newsom told reporters.
The governor accused the network of perpetuating "crime and violence in this country" through "xenophobia" and "scapegoating."
"'It's not the right time, not the right time, not the right time.' Rinse, repeat," he said. "'Not the right time, rinse repeat, Sandy Hook, not the right time, rinse, repeat. Uvalde.' Remember Uvalde? Remember? Rinse, repeat. You don't remember the Borderline here, 13 people, that was a few years ago, you'll have to look that one up. Rinse, repeat. Not a damn thing they do. And we know it. And we allow them to get away with that."
Gavin Newsom: Second Amendment becoming a "suicide pact" www.youtube.com
During his visit at the hospital, Newsom tweeted that he was "pulled away to be briefed on another shooting" at Half Moon Bay.
"Tragedy upon tragedy," he wrote.
Newsom also told CBS News that the Second Amendment is "becoming a suicide pact."
"Nothing about this is surprising," the governor said. "Everything about this is infuriating."
He added that he has "great respect" for the Second Amendment and "no ideological opposition to someone reasonably and responsibly owning firearms and getting background checks and being trained," but said mental health issues alone don't explain the country's gun violence.
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California has among the strictest gun laws in the country. The Monterey Park suspect used a modified 9 mm submachine gun-style semi-automatic weapon, according to the AP, which is illegal in California. The Half Moon Bay suspect used a semi-automatic handgun but it's unclear if it was a legal firearm, according to police.
Newsom said he would continue to press for additional gun control measures in California, which has a 37% lower gun death rate than the national average, according to the Giffords Law Center. Newsom complained to CBS News that only Democrats have led the push to tighten gun laws to prevent similar tragedies.
"And yet, with all that evidence, no one on the other side seems to give a damn," he said. "They can't get anything done in Congress."
Gov. Newsom goes after high-capacity magazine after Monterey Park Shooting www.youtube.com
The Half Moon Bay massacre marked the country's 37th mass shooting — meaning four or more victims were shot — and sixth mass murder this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive. The U.S. is already outpacing last year's rate, when there had been 27 mass shootings and one mass murder in the first 23 days of the year.
"Half Moon Bay is a beautiful community just south of SF. It's now part of the tidal wave of gun violence suffocating our country," tweeted state Sen. Scott Wiener, who represents San Francisco. "34 mass shootings in 23 days isn't normal. If doesn't have to be this way. There are too many guns. Our country needs the will to say enough."