Aug 8, 2019

8 El Paso victims did not want to meet with Trump, hospital says

President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump visit an Emergency Operations Center in El Paso on August 7, 2019. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Eight victims of the El Paso mass shooting did not want to meet with President Trump on Wednesday and did not want any visitors, University Medical Center spokesman Ryan Mielke tells the Washington Post.

Why it matters, via the Post: "Trump’s visit to El Paso was unwelcome for many elected officials and other El Pasoans, who believe Trump’s rhetoric about immigrants and the border has emboldened anti-immigrant groups."

The backdrop: As the president set out to meet families and victims of the mass shootings in Ohio and Texas on Wednesday, he also took time to launch or renew attacks on Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley, Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown, Joe Biden, Fox News anchor Shepard Smith, Beto O'Rourke and others.

  • Trump told medical staff at El Paso's University Medical Center that the crowds for his visit were much larger than Beto O'Rourke's, who led a separate gathering to honor his hometown after the mass shooting.
  • At least 200 people protested Trump's Wednesday visit outside Dayton’s Miami Valley Hospital, while protestors in El Paso held "Racist Go Home" signs outside Trump's motorcade.

Between the lines: Trump's actions suggest he doesn't consider his standard political rhetoric and his duties as consoler-in-chief to be mutually exclusive.

Go deeper: Trump taunts Beto O'Rourke ahead of El Paso visit

Go deeper

Trump attacks Ohio politicians, Biden, Fox News after visiting shooting victims

President Trump speaks to the media as he visits the emergency operations center in El Paso. Photo: Evan Vucci/AP

President Trump met with first responders and survivors of last weekend's mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas, Wednesday, in a visit he hailed as "incredible." But it was also marked by divisive rhetoric against the media and political rivals — including local politicians.

Details: In a series of tweets after visiting victims of the mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio, Trump accused Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley of lying in a press conference, insulted 2020 candidate Joe Biden as "boring," and called Fox News' Shep Smith worse than "Fake News CNN."

Go deeperArrowUpdated Aug 8, 2019

In photos: Trump visits El Paso and Dayton

President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump with first responders at El Paso Regional Communications Center. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump was met with protests and some support during his visit to El Paso and Dayton with First Lady Melania Trump Wednesday following last weekend's twin mass shootings in the cities.

Details: At least 200 protesters gathered outside Dayton’s Miami Valley Hospital during the visit, "blaming Trump’s incendiary rhetoric for inflaming political and racial tensions" and demanding tighter gun restrictions, AP reports. A rally countering the visit was held in El Paso. Here's what unfolded, in photos.

Go deeperArrowAug 8, 2019

Beto O'Rourke: Trump's "bizarre behavior" a distraction from real problems

2020 candidate Beto O'Rourke told CNN's Jake Tapper on Sunday that President Trump's "bizarre behavior," including his retweet of an unsubstantiated conspiracy theory about Jeffrey Epstein's death, is a distraction for the American people who want to see real solutions on gun violence and white nationalism.

Go deeperArrowAug 11, 2019