Trump over the top
The backlash following Donald Trump's tweets Sunday after the horrific massacre in Orlando felt, in some ways, familiar. It's now a pattern - a disturbing, unsettling one - that comes after a mass shooting in this country: Tragedy, followed by expressions of thoughts and prayers, followed by debate over what politicians say and how it gets politicized as the country grapples with the human carnage.
Yet this time, the backlash focused on Trump's willingness to insert himself into the news -- to make even a single moment of the immediate aftermath in the senseless tragedy about himself.
Not once, but twice, Trump took up the valuable 140 characters of Twitter's real estate to point out that he was right. He said he "appreciate[s] the congrats for being right on radical Islamic terrorism," even if yes, he said he doesn't "want congrats, I want toughness & vigilance." (More on that below.) Hours later, after saying "our leadership is weak and ineffective," he said "I called it and asked for the ban," referring to the ban he has proposed on Muslims from entering the United States.
- Jena McGregor, Washington Post
‘Strict gun regulation’ theory didn’t apply in Orlando
According to Donald Trump, he has been congratulated "for being right on radical Islamic terrorism" after 50 people died by a lone gunman's hand in an Orlando, Florida, nightclub. The shooting, however, proves him wrong on several major points that unite his supporters. Even though they will ignore the proof, it's worth laying out.
During the primary campaign, Trump kept using the November terror attacks in Paris to make the point that strict gun regulations increase the casualty count. France, he said over and over, had "the toughest gun laws in the world." Because of them, only the bad guys had guns. Had it been otherwise, fewer people would have died, Trump told applauding audiences.
At the Bataclan concert hall in Paris, 1,500 people were in the audience and, as Trump said, nobody had guns. Three gunmen killed 89 of the concert-goers.
But at the Pulse club in Orlando, about 320 people were present when Omar Mateen went on the rampage. A security guard -- a cop working extra duty -- opened fire, and two other officers who'd been nearby backed him up. Even so, the lone attacker managed to kill 50 people, a much bigger proportion of those present than in Paris.
- Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg View
Clinton gives measured address in Cleveland
Stealing a jump on Donald Trump (whose campaign team has never gotten up to speed) and obliterating one of Trump's talking points, Hillary Clinton gave a tough-minded foreign policy speech and she specifically identified "radical jihadism or radical Islamism" as the ideological basis for terrorism. She also vowed to put identification of lone wolves at the top of her anti-terrorism to-do list.
Speaking in the swing state of Ohio, she declared this a politics-free day, but of course it was all about politics as she seized the opportunity to demonstrate her own maturity and Trump's unfitness to be commander-in-chief. Before she began, Trump had gone a long way toward confirming the latter. With his own conspiratorial-minded lone-ness in full view, Trump suggested President Barack Obama was perhaps Muslim or otherwise sympathetic to Islamist terrorists. It's the kind of fodder to get his birther base revved up but in a general election context reminds voters how grossly incapable he would be of performing his duties as president.
By Jennifer Rubin, Washington Post