Colorado lawmakers respond to Colorado Springs Club Q shooting

Club Q Shooting Colorado Springs
Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite
Law enforcement and police tape surround Club Q in Colorado Springs on Nov. 20, 2022 after a mass shooting there overnight.
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Several Colorado lawmakers expressed shock and sadness over the shooting at Club Q, an LGBTQ club in Colorado Springs.

Gov. Jared Polis, the nation’s first openly gay governor, called the shooting “horrific, sickening and devastating.”

“My heart breaks for the family and friends of those lost, injured, and traumatized in this horrific shooting,” he said in a statement that also thanked first responders for the swift response. “Colorado stands with our LGTBQ community and everyone impacted by this tragedy as we mourn together.”

Sen. Michael Bennet said he was thinking of those who lost their lives in the attack, as well as those injured. “As we seek justice for this unimaginable act, we must do more to protect the LGBTQ community and stand firm against discrimination and hate in every form.”

Calling it “an unspeakable act,” Sen. John Hickenlooper tweeted, “This community is paying with their lives for the rise in hate and bigotry. Even in a safe space like Club Q. We have to do more than remember the victims. We have to give people the freedom to be who they are, love who they love, and live full lives.”

Democratic congress members Diana DeGette, Jason Crow and Joe Neguse, as well as congress members-elect Brittany Pettersen and Yadira Caraveo, condemned the shooting while expressing their support for the LGBTQ community.

“Andrea and I are praying for the victims and their families, and we join our entire state in standing with the LGBTQ+ community during this difficult time,” tweeted Neguse, whose community also suffered from a mass shooting in March, 2021.

“My heart is with all the victims of last night’s horrific shooting in Colorado Springs, along with their families and all of our LBGTQ community. Hate and senseless gun violence have no place in Colorado or our country,” tweeted Yadira Caraveo.

Republican congress members also condemned the shooting, but unlike Democrats did not link the shooting as an act of violence directed to the LGBTQ community.

Rep. Doug Lamborn, whose district includes Colorado Springs, said, "I am saddened to hear of the senseless loss of life in the shooting last night. Law enforcement and first responders are to be commended for their rapid response. All people should pray for the victims and their families."

While GOP Rep. Lauren Boebert tweeted, “This morning the victims and their families are in my prayers. This lawless violence needs to end and end quickly.”

Several GOP lawmakers, including Lamborn and Boebert, have supported anti-transgender legislation in Congress and have criticized drag shows. Club Q was expected to host a drag brunch Sunday for Transgender Day of Remembrance.

President Joe Biden said in a statement that while a motive for the shooting is not yet clear, “we know that the LGBTQI+ community has been subjected to horrific hate violence in recent years. Gun violence continues to have a devastating and particular impact on LGBTQI+ communities across our nation and threats of violence are increasing.” He called for the passage of an assault weapons ban.

“Places that are supposed to be safe spaces of acceptance and celebration should never be turned into places of terror and violence. Yet it happens far too often. We must drive out the inequities that contribute to violence against LGBTQI+ people. We cannot and must not tolerate hate,” President Biden said.

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