Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas) will not be attending the upcoming National Rifle Association (NRA) annual convention.
Crenshaw told the organization on Tuesday morning he would not be in attendance because “he wouldn’t be back in time” from Ukraine, as Fox News reported.
The outlet noted Crenshaw’s office made it clear his decision not to attend the convention was made before the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.
His office explained it was because Crenshaw will be in Ukraine on a trip that “came together pretty quickly.”
Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) also said he would not be attending the convention.
“Prior to the tragedy today in Uvalde we had already informed the NRA he would not be able to speak due to [an] unexpected change in his schedule,” Cornyn spokesperson Drew Brandewie said, according to Politico.
He added, “He now has to be in D.C. for personal reasons on Friday.”
A gunman opened fire killing 19 students and two adults on Tuesday.
Other Republicans received criticism for taking money from the NRA amid their responses to the tragedy.
The Washington Post noted that 19 current or recent Republican senators have received at least $1 million each in campaign contributions from the NRA over the span of their careers, citing data compiled by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence in 2019.
Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) received criticism from Jemele Hill, a contributing writer for the Atlantic, on Twitter.
“Grief overwhelms the soul. Children slaughtered. Lives extinguished. Parents’ hearts wrenched. Incomprehensible. I offer prayer and condolence but know that it is grossly inadequate. We must find answers,” Romney wrote.
Hill replied, “Grief does not overwhelm the soul nearly as much as $13M from the NRA overwhelms your bank account. The answer you seek is the money you continue to take.”
Grief does not overwhelm the soul nearly as much as $13M from the NRA overwhelms your bank account.
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) May 25, 2022
Romney spokesperson Brianna Manzelli told the Post no one “owns Senator Romney’s vote, as evidenced by his record of independence in the Senate.”
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) reacted to the tragedy, saying, “Horrified and heartbroken by reports of the disgusting violence directed at innocent schoolkids in Uvalde, Texas. The entire country is praying for the children, families, teachers, and staff and the first responders on the scene.”
$1,267,139 from the NRA https://t.co/q5eQLYE1Rs
— Bess Kalb (@bessbell) May 25, 2022
Writer Bess Kalb responded, “$1,267,139 from the NRA.”
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