Lawmakers and leaders across Illinois spoke out Monday about the deadly Highland Park parade shooting that left six dead and injured dozens other.
When the Highland Park tragedy began Illinois Governor JB Pritzker was in Chicago at the Hyde Park parade in Chicago.
“Unfortunately we know we have an active shooter situation in Highland Park at a parade,” he said.
Pritzker left the event and cancel a later public stop.
“I’ve been in touch with our state police, local police hoping to keep the crowd safe there. Unfortunately, I won’t be marching in this parade or the parade later in Evanston. It will be important for me to stay on top of this,” he said.
Later as word of the death toll spread, Pritzker released a statement saying in part: “There are no words for the kind of monster who lies in wait and fires into a crowd of families with children celebrating a holiday with their community.”
The Republican candidate for governor, State Senator Darren Bailey, posted this video on Facebook.
Even though authorities were describing the Highland Park situation as ongoing, Bailey pivoted to his campaign message.
“We’re just going to take a moment to pray for the families, pray for the law enforcement and even the organizers of this parade,” he said. “Let’s move on and let’s celebrate the independence of this nation. We know the mission, we’ve got to get corruption and evil out of our government.”
Bailey also took to Twitter pushing for the legislature to act.
“We must call a special session to address crime on our streets. We need to demand law and order and prosecute criminals. We need more police on our streets to keep our families safe. Public safety must be a top priority,” he tweeted.
The Springfield legislature is expected to return soon to take up abortion and during an interview last week, the governor said lawmakers are exploring possible new gun legislation.
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who is dealing with fallout from at least seven dead and more than 50 people shot in Chicago this weekend, reacted. She tweeted, “The tragedy…is devastating. I have been in contact with Mayor Nancy Rotering and have offered our support, and the Chicago Police Department is providing assistance.”
Partisan outrage also lit up social media. Congressman Sean Casten, a Democrat, tweeted, “This is the world the NRA, the GOP and the Supreme Court have created. We don’t have to live like this. But they all have blood on their hands for making this our July 4th reality.”