A controversial clip from a May rally in Florida of U.S. President Donald Trump "musing about shooting undocumented migrants" resurfaced on social media in the wake of two mass shootings on Saturday in Texas and Ohio.
In the video, Trump responds to a supporter at the rally yelling that U.S. Border Patrol should "shoot" migrants at the border with a smile and then cracks a joke. The exchange has found new relevance as the shooter in El Paso, Texas aimed to “kill as many hispanics as possible” and was motivated by a white supremacist worldview.
"Don't forget: We don't let them, and we can't let them, use weapons. We can't," Trump said. "Other countries do. We can't. I would never do that. But how do you stop these people? You can't."
"Shoot them!" yelled a supporter in the crowd.
Trump responded with a joke, "That's only in the Panhandle you can get away with this stuff," Trump said referring to Florida's Panhandle. "Only in the Panhandle."
Democratic presidential candidates are pointing a finger of blame at President Donald Trump following recent mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio.
- Texas mass shooting being investigated as domestic terrorism
- 'When will Trump stop demonizing immigrants?': U.S. Jewish leaders 'rage' in wake of mass shootings
In television interviews, several urged additional gun restrictions such as universal background checks. But they also cited Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric and racial language.
Julian Castro, who previously served as San Antonio mayor and U.S. housing secretary, pointed to a “toxic brew” of white nationalism and says Trump needs to do more to “unite Americans instead of fanning the flames of bigotry.”
Beto O’Rourke, a former congressman from Texas, accused Trump of being a white nationalist and says he is encouraging “open racism.”
New Jersey senator Cory Booker says Trump bears responsibility because he has done nothing to call out rising hatred in the U.S.
The Associated Press contributed to this report