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Govs. Pritzker, Reynolds, QC's congressional leaders react to Texas school shooting

Iowa and Illinois lawmakers expressed their sadness and support for victims in the wake of the Texas school shooting that killed over 20 people.

MOLINE, Ill. — In the wake of the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, that took the lives of over 20 people, lawmakers are releasing statements and proposing legislative action.

Quad Cities area lawmakers have unanimously condemned the act and offered support and prayers to those affected. Here's how they have reacted:

Gov. J.B. Pritzker

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker released two different statements on Facebook and Twitter; sharing a common thread of calling for work to end gun violence in the U.S.

"I’m outraged, devastated, and utterly exhausted for the families of Robb Elementary School," Pritzker said on Facebook. "As we grieve with the Uvalde community, we must continue our work toward ending the gun violence epidemic in our country. We must do it now. No more prayers without action."

"It is heartwrenching and enraging to hear the news of the elementary students and their teacher gunned down in Texas," Pritzker said on Twitter. "My prayers are with their families, and my resolve is with all Americans who are working to end senseless gun violence wherever it occurs."

Gov. Kim Reynolds

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds' statement expressed heartbreak and a commitment to prayer. She also issued a half-staff flag order lasting through Saturday, May 28, to honor the shooting's victims.

"My heart breaks for all those affected by the tragic and senseless shooting in Uvalde, Texas," she said in the statement. "Kevin (Reynolds' husband) and I join with Iowans in praying for all the parents, families, students, and staff involved. No parent or child should ever have to face this unimaginable tragedy."

U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth

U.S. Sen. Duckworth (D-Illinois) issued a response Tuesday calling for direct action at the federal level, the suspension of the filibuster, and the passage of gun safety reforms. The statement reads, in part:

What happened in Texas today is every parent's nightmare. I’m heartbroken for these families and angry as hell at Republicans’ shameless inaction to save the lives of innocent children. We know how to stop these attacks from happening as often as they do. We know there will be another and another and another attack in the weeks and months ahead if we do nothing. And we know who is preventing action. The Senate should immediately—at a 50-vote threshold—vote on commonsense gun safety reforms that the American people have demanded for too long. For every victim of this tragedy and every tragedy before it, enough must be enough.

She also made a post on her Facebook page critical of her Republican colleagues, saying, "As a mother of two, my heart is shattered. 14 children and 1 teacher gone forever. I will never understand how Republicans can consider NRA dollars more important than American lives. When will enough finally be enough? This cannot be normal. We need to take action. Now."

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) responded by voicing heartbreak and pleading for action across the political aisle in the wake of repeated tragedy. His statement reads:

Today’s news is heartbreaking and tragic.  Fourteen young lives and a teacher gone far too soon.  My heart is with the families and friends of these lives lost. I implore – beg – my Republican colleagues to join Democrats in finally making changes to our gun laws to help prevent Americans from re-living this gun tragedy far too often.  We cannot continue to sit on our hands and allow innocent lives to be lost. Congress must act.

U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley

U.S. Sen. Grassley (R-Iowa) released a pair of tweets in support of the Uvalde community and pushed Congress to pass his EAGLES Act, which aims to expand the U.S. Secret Service's National Threat Assessment Center and give it a greater focus on school violence prevention.

U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst

U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) made a brief social media statement calling the shooting an act of evil.

"A senseless, horrendous act of evil," the statement reads. "My heart is with all those in Texas right now."

U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos

U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-Illinois) released a statement on Twitter expressing heartbreak as a mother and a call for Congress to take action. Her statement reads:

I’m a mother who raised three boys - today’s tragic news makes me sick to my stomach. My heart breaks for the children and families of Robb Elementary School.  These innocent lives have been taken too soon. It’s time for Congress to take action.

U.S. Rep. Ashley Hinson

U.S. Rep. Ashley Hinson (R-Iowa) took to Facebook to offer prayers for grieving Uvalde families, peace, and an end to senseless violence. The post reads:

This is absolutely heartbreaking. I am praying for the victims, their families, and the entire Uvalde community right now. As we learn more about this horrific act, the more devastating & sickening it is. I’m holding the families whose worlds will never be the same close to my heart and in my prayers right now. I’m praying for peace in our country and an end to senseless, violent acts like this one.

U.S. Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks

U.S. Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R-Iowa) released the shortest statement of the group on Twitter just a few hours after the shooting.

"Please pray for the safety of everyone in Uvalde," she tweeted.

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