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The Administration keeps a focus on the tragedy at hand

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White House Won’t Rise to Calls for Gun Control

The Administration keeps a focus on the tragedy at hand

As the President and First Lady prepared to join with families in mourning the tragedy at Virginia Tech today, the White House would not take the bait of calls for new gun control legislation.
 
With the remarks of Acting Press Secretary Dana Perino and subsequent questions at today’s gaggle (early morning briefing) dealing exclusively with the shootings yesterday, it was only a matter of time before someone would bring up gun control and whether the Administration would now back tougher laws.
 
Sure enough, Ken Herman of the Austin American-Statesman asked about the need for federal gun control laws. 
 
“Look, we understand that there’s going to be and  there has been an ongoing national discussion, conversation and debate  about gun control policy,” replied Perino, “Of course, we’re going to be participants in that conversation.  Today, however, is a day that is time to focus on the families, the school and the community.  Everyone’s been shaken to the core by this event and so I think that what we need to do is focus on support of the victims and their families and then also allow the facts of the case to unfold before we talk anymore about policies.”
 
Herman was undaunted and asked about the President’s concerns about guns.
 
“Ken, let me just refer you back to what I said before,” Perino retorted, “I think the facts of this case need to unfold.  There has been an ongoing discussion and there will be continued conversation about gun control policy.  We will participate in that but today is not the day.”
 
There was no talk about embattled Administration figures such as Attorney General Alberto Gonzales (whose testimony before Congress about the firing of eight U.S. attorneys was postponed two days because of the tragedy) and World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz or the Administration’s call for funding of US action in Iraq.  Speaking for foreign journalists, Tass correspondent Andrei Sitov expressed condolences to Perino.
 
“This is a tragedy that was felt around the world,” said Perino, as she thanked Sitov.  “The President and Mrs. Bush are very grateful for the heads of state and members of governments from around the world who have expressed their sympathies and their support.  That is one of those things that is great about humanity — that it really comes out in such a time of tragedy such as this."

Written By

John Gizzi has come to be known as â??the man who knows everyone in Washingtonâ? and, indeed, many of those who hold elected positions and in party leadership roles throughout the United States. With his daily access to the White House as a correspondent, Mr. Gizzi offers readers the inside scoop on whatâ??s going on in the nationâ??s capital. He is the author of a number of popular Human Events features, such as â??Gizzi on Politicsâ? and spotlights of key political races around the country. Gizzi also is the host of â??Gizziâ??s America,â? video interviews that appear on HumanEvents.com. Gizzi got his start at Human Events in 1979 after graduating from Fairfield University in Connecticut and then working for the Travis County (Tex.) Tax Assessor. He has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV shows, including Fox News Channel, C-SPAN, America's Voice,The Jim Bohannon Show, Fox 5, WUSA 9, America's Radio News Network and is also a frequent contributor to the BBC -- and has appeared on France24 TV and German Radio. He is a past president of the Georgetown Kiwanis Club, past member of the St. Matthew's Cathedral's Parish Council, and secretary of the West End Friends of the Library. He is a recipient of the William A. Rusher Award for Journalistic Excellence and was named Journalist of the Year by the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2002. John Gizzi is also a credentialed correspondent at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. He has questioned two IMF managing directors, Dominique Strauss-Kahn and Christine LaGarde, and has become friends with international correspondents worldwide. Johnâ??s email is JGizzi@EaglePub.Com

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