Texas state senator says Abbott ‘has tried to bamboozle’ community after Uvalde shooting

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A Texas state senator accused Gov. Greg Abbott (R) on Wednesday of trying to “bamboozle” Texans “into thinking that we’re actually going to do something” following a shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, last month that left 21 people dead.

During an interview on CNN, anchor Wolf Blitzer asked Texas state Sen. Roland Gutierrez (D) to respond to Abbott’s announcement earlier in the day that he had requested the lieutenant governor and Texas House Speaker to convene special legislative committees focusing on school safety, mental health, social media, police training and firearm safety.

Gutierrez, whose district includes Uvalde, said the call for committees, like similar actions after previous mass shootings in the state, would not bring about meaningful reform, adding that there was no process to convene special committees unless the governor called a special session.

“He … has tried to bamboozle, I think, this community into thinking that we’re actually going to do something,” the state senator said of Abbott. “He did this — this is the same deal that he did after Santa Fe and El Paso and Sutherland Springs, roundtables, recommendations, and nothing led to any meaningful legislation.”

“The only thing that can get us into that building is a special session called for a date certain that only he can call,” he added.

Gutierrez’s remarks come roughly one week after the shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde left 19 children and two adults dead.

The shooting has reignited calls to pass gun reform legislation, and Texas Democrats and some Republicans have urged for a special session in the wake of the shooting, which would allow for the state legislature to change, eliminate or add new laws, according to KSAT 12.

Abbott is the only official who can call a special session, since the state legislature only works during a five-month period once every other year, the ABC affiliate noted.

The Hill has reached out to Abbott’s office for comment.

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