U.S. Congressman Patrick Murphy said Republican leader Donald Trump’s response to the Orlando massacre was wrong and dangerous.
Murphy spoke to SFGN via telephone Monday evening from Washington, D.C. where he was receiving briefings from the House Intelligence Committee.
"Donald Trump’s response follows a series of knee-jerk reactions that does nothing but incite more fear and hatred and endangers our country,” Murphy said.
Trump, the Republican Party’s presumptive Presidential nominee, gave a speech in New Hampshire on Monday where he again called for a ban on Muslims immigrating to America. The New York businessman called on Muslim communities in America to turn in their “bad guys,” said President Barack Obama did not know what he was doing and the burden of providing an effective immigration screening process was on Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and presumptive Presidential nominee of the Democratic Party.
“Why don’t we have an effective screening system?,” Trump asked in his speech. “We don’t. We’re being laughed at all over the world.”
Murphy, a Democrat from Jupiter, dismissed Trump’s comments as unhinged once again.
“Remember this all started with him pushing the birther movement and believing in every conspiracy theory under the sun,” Murphy said.
Also on Monday, the head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation refused to name the shooter. James B. Comey, FBI director, told reporters he did not want to give any fame or glory to the man who committed the mass killings.
The gunman was from Fort Pierce in St. Lucie County – part of Murphy’s district.
“The bottom line is in a post 9-11 world, federal agencies are not getting enough information to local authorities,” Murphy said. “Local agencies are our ears on the ground. At the end of the day, they might know something.”
A lone wolf is tougher to track, Murphy said, and the gunman was on a watch list for “some time” but was taken off the list. The shooter took his own life along with 49 others at Pulse Nightclub.
While Murphy acknowledged it is a tragic time for the LGBT community, he urged Floridians to remain calm and go about their daily lives.
“This will not tear America apart,” Murphy said. “We are strong as one. We cannot let extremism divide our country. People need to be aware of their surroundings, but not succumb to fear.”