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Former Texas Rep. and 2020 Democratic candidate Beto O'Rourke continued his crusade in favor of gun control measures on Sunday after his home state experienced yet another mass shooting on Saturday, killing 7 people and injuring more than 20.

"100 killed daily in the United States of America. We're averaging about 300 mass shootings a year. No other country comes close. So yes, this is f***ed up. If we don't call it out for what it is, if we're not able to speak clearly, if we're not able to act decisively, then we'll continue to have this kind of bloodshed in America. And I cannot accept that. We're going to speak as defiantly and as strongly as we can, but we're also going to take action. Universal background checks, red flag laws, an end to the sales of weapons of war and buying those AK-47s and AR-15s back so they cannot be used against our fellow Americans."

The big picture: O'Rourke's rhetoric on gun control has been core to his campaign in the month since the mass shooting in El Paso that killed 22 people, with his emotional appearances on cable news and in speeches going viral on several occasions. O'Rourke called for a mandatory government buyback of "every assault weapon in America" in an op-ed in USA Today last month, and he doubled down on his plan on Saturday.

  • Asked by a reporter how he would reassure people who are afraid the government will take their assault weapons, O'Rourke responded: "I want to be really clear that that’s exactly what we are going to do."

Go deeper: 2020 Democrats push for gun control measures after Texas shootings

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - World

Pentagon: 8,500 troops on high alert for possible deployment to eastern Europe

Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has placed 8,500 U.S. troops on "heightened preparedness to deploy" to eastern Europe in case NATO activates its rapid-response force over tensions with Russia, the Pentagon announced Monday.

Why it matters: No decisions have been made to deploy U.S. forces, but the heightened alert level will allow the military to rapidly shore up NATO's eastern flank in the event that Russia invades Ukraine. The Pentagon warned that Russia has shown "no signs of de-escalating," and continues to amass troops on Ukraine's borders.

Alabama's new congressional map rejected by federal judges

The Alabama State Capitol in Montgomery. Photo: Taylor Hill/Getty Images

Federal judges on Monday night blocked Alabama's newly drawn congressional map and ordered the Republican-led State Legislature to create a new one that includes two districts, rather than the planned one.

Why it matters: "Black voters have less opportunity than other Alabamians to elect candidates of their choice to Congress," the panel of three judges wrote in their ruling.

Australian Open organizers reverse "Where is Peng Shuai?" t-shirt ban

Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai during the 2020 Australian Open in Melbourne. Photo: Bai Xue/Xinhua via Getty Images

Australian Open organizers on Tuesday reversed a ban on t-shirts supporting Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai following widespread criticism.

Why it matters: Tennis Australia's announcement came less than 24 hours after the governing body defended the decision to ask fans last Friday to remove "Where is Peng Shuai?" t-shirts, citing ticket policy prohibiting political clothing, per the BBC.