Pelosi mourns ‘senseless slaughter’ at LGBTQ nightclub

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) condemned a shooting overnight at an LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado Springs, Colo., that killed five people, calling it a “senseless slaughter.”

“Americans awoke this morning to horrific news: a brutal attack on an LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado Springs,” Pelosi said in a statement. “Our hearts break at the senseless slaughter of at least five beautiful souls and the many more injured or forever traumatized, at what was a sanctuary of safety and solidarity.”

Authorities said a 22-year-old suspect entered Club Q and immediately began shooting, killing five people and injuring 18 others, before at least two people confronted him. Police have since detained the suspect, identified as Anderson Lee Aldrich.

“The attack on Club Q, which fell on the eve of Transgender Day of Remembrance, is despicable — further shattering the sense of safety of LGBTQ Americans across the country,” Pelosi said. “While Democrats have taken important steps to combat gun violence this Congress, this deadly attack is a challenge to our conscience and a reminder that we must keep fighting to do more.”

Lawmakers passed a bipartisan gun bill over the summer in the wake of mass shootings at an Uvalde, Texas, elementary school and a Buffalo, N.Y., supermarket.

The bill enhanced background checks for firearm purchasers younger than 21, provided money for states to implement red flag laws and cracked down on straw purchases, among other provisions.

Pelosi was one of many prominent political figures to quickly condemn the shooting, including President Biden and Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.).

“This is heartbreaking and horrifying,” Schumer wrote in a tweet. “I’m praying for those who were killed and those who were wounded. We must stand up to hatred against LGBTQ+ Americans. We must continue to work to end gun violence in America.”

Police say they will determine if the shooting constitutes a hate crime as part of their investigation but signaled it was too early to use the label.

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