POLITICS

Rick Santorum Suggests Unarmed 'Soft Target' Shoppers Tempted El Paso Shooter

The former Pennsylvania senator parroted a line often used by gun control opponents — that if everyone is armed, everyone is safer.

Former Pennsylvania senator and past Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum indicated Sunday that El Paso Walmart shoppers were tempting “soft targets” to a mass shooter because they weren’t armed.

When CNN “State of the Union” host Jake Tapper asked about the deadly Texas shooting from the day before, Santorum responded: “So they go after soft targets, that’s exactly right. The whole point is that when you restrict guns to law-abiding people, you make more soft targets.”

He indicated stricter gun control laws would end up taking weapons out of the hands of law-abiding citizens, making them more vulnerable to criminals — even though that’s not the case in Texas.

Texas is an open carry state where shoppers could legally have been armed — but the law didn’t have any impact on the Walmart attack. Tapper pointed out to Santorum that alleged gunman Patrick Crusius, 21, did not appear to be deterred by the possibility of any armed shoppers. In addition, it wasn’t likely that a gunman could have easily determined who was armed and who was not to make any decision about a “soft target.”

Santorum, now a conservative CNN commentator, was parroting the narrative of gun control foes who argue that everyone is safer if everyone is armed. He also claimed, without evidence, that in “several” shooting instances this year, armed “law-abiding people actually come, not police ... and stop these things.”

In fact, it was police, not armed civilians, who stopped the attacks in both El Paso and later that night in Dayton, Ohio, where a gunman killed nine people in yet another mass shooting. Last Sunday, police also stopped a mass shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival in California that killed two children and an adult

Tapper also read a list of poll numbers that indicated Americans overwhelmingly support increased gun safety measures.

Check out the video up top. 

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