Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) on Saturday offered her condolences to the families affected by a mass shooting in Southern California on Friday.
“My heart goes out to the families of the victims of these tragic shootings in Santa Monica, and I am praying for the recovery of those who were injured,” Boxer said in a statement.
Witnesses described the man and his weaponry to the Los Angeles Times: He dressed in all black, carried a semiautomatic rifle and wore an ammunition belt around his waist.
“He looked like a SWAT officer,” one woman told the paper.
Boxer's brief statement avoided the politics surrounding gun control.
During the Senate’s gun control debate, Boxer was a proponent of stronger gun laws, including mandatory background checks and stronger penalties for straw sales. Her bill, the Safe Communities, Safe Schools Act, did not include a semiautomatic weapons ban.
“There are 31,000 reasons to pass sensible gun legislation,” Boxer told her colleagues in April. “That’s how many people die a year at the hands of a gun.”
In a speech on the Senate floor two weeks later, she called reforms “common sense.”
“We will never be able to stand here and say we’ve solved every problem — you can’t — but you have to be able to know that you did everything you could to reduce these tragedies,” Boxer said. “We need to do common sense things around here. … The slaughter of innocents must stop.”
Once the Senate voted down background check amendments in the legislation in late April, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) tabled the gun control debate altogether.