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Ocasio-Cortez: Trump's immigration rhetoric 'directly responsible' for El Paso mass shooting

Ocasio-Cortez: Trump's immigration rhetoric 'directly responsible' for El Paso mass shooting
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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezSimmering Democratic tensions show signs of boiling over Out-of-touch Democrats running scared of progressives Progressives rally behind Omar while accusing her critics of bias MORE (D-N.Y.) late Monday said that President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump DOJ demanded metadata on 73 phone numbers and 36 email addresses, Apple says Putin says he's optimistic about working with Biden ahead of planned meeting Biden meets Queen Elizabeth for first time as president MORE's divisive rhetoric on immigration was "directly responsible" for the mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, that left at least 22 people dead. 

The freshman New York congresswoman made the comments while speaking at a vigil in Brooklyn for the victims of the shooting in El Paso and Dayton, Ohio, according to the New York Daily News

“I’m tired of the questioning if the president is racist. He is,” Ocasio-Cortez told a crowd of about 500 people, the newspaper noted. 

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Ocasio-Cortez also repeatedly decried white supremacy. 

“There are so many different issues that are weaving themselves into a braid of violence into our country. One of them is white supremacist terrorism,” she said, adding later that “white supremacy is an international terrorist problem." 

The statement appeared to be a reference to shootings at mosques in New Zealand earlier this year that killed more than 50 people. 

The comments from Ocasio-Cortez came after a weekend where mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton left at least 32 people dead. The incidents have sparked discussions about the regularity of mass shootings in the country, as well as issues surrounding gun legislation and white supremacy. 

The suspect in El Paso is believed to have posted a racist, anti-immigration manifesto on the fringe social networking platform 8chan before carrying out the massacre. Among other things, the alleged shooter described Hispanic migrants coming to the U.S. as an "invasion," language that some Democratic lawmaker say echoes Trump's. 

Trump on Monday called on the nation to condemn bigotry, hate and white supremacy. He added that federal law enforcement would receive whatever it needs to combat the threat posed by white nationalists and domestic terrorism. 

“In one voice, our nation must condemn bigotry, hatred and white supremacy,” Trump said in a nationally televised address from the Diplomatic Room of the White House. "These sinister ideologies must be defeated.” 

Acting White House chief of staff Mick MulvaneyMick MulvaneyHeadhunters having hard time finding jobs for former Trump officials: report Trump holdovers are denying Social Security benefits to the hardest working Americans Mulvaney calls Trump's comments on Capitol riot 'manifestly false' MORE said Sunday that it wasn't "fair to try and lay" the shooting at the "feet of the president."