Obama rally cancelled due to Colorado shooting
Published: Saturday, July 21, 2012
Updated: Sunday, July 22, 2012 13:07
There are many situations that presidential candidates must prepare for while on the campaign trail, but no candidate could prepare for what occurred at 12:39 a.m. Friday morning.
President Barack Obama was expected to appear at a campaign rally at Rollins College in Winter Park, Fla., today at 4 p.m. but had to cancel because of a mass shooting that occurred in Aurora, Colo., at a midnight premiere of the new Batman movie, The Dark Knight Rises. Instead, he spoke in Fort Myers, putting politics aside to focus on the well-being of the American people.
“I was looking forward to having a fun conversation with you," Obama said at the Fort Myers rally. "This morning we woke up to news of a tragedy that reminds us of all the ways we are united as one American family.”
Good Morning America reported that the shooter, thought to be 24-year-old James Holmes, was dressed in full riot regalia and unloaded a barrage of bullets from four different fully loaded weapons into a crowd of unsuspecting moviegoers.
Witnesses in the movie theater say they saw smoke and heard gunfire and thought it was a part of the movie effects until they saw the shooter standing at the front of the theater having entered through an emergency exit.
With the casualties totaling 71 people – 12 dead and 59 injured – the incident is the largest mass shooting in U.S. history.
First lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney have also postponed their travels in the wake of the tragic event.
“There are going to be other days for politics,” Obama said. “This is a day for prayer and reflection.”
Obama for America Florida said in a press release the president is reporting back to the White House to attend to the situation at hand. There is no word on whether he will reschedule his Central Florida rally.
For a more in-depth story, pick up Monday's issue of the Central Florida Future.