Clinton speaking to first responders at Pulse nightclub memorial in Orlando. Laid white roses at the memorial. pic.twitter.com/ozmhAClfVW— Tamara Keith (@tamarakeithNPR) July 22, 2016
One day following the Republicans' scary shoutfest in Cleveland, Democratic Party nominee Hillary Clinton made an unannounced visit to Orlando for a private meeting with the families of victims of the June 12 shooting there, and made a trip Friday to Pulse nightclub where it took place to speak with first responders and pay her respects. The mass shooting was the deadliest in modern US history, and the largest massacre of LGBT people here as well.
The New Civil Rights movement reported on the solemn meeting with the families and select journalists Friday morning, which those invited were asked not to publicize ahead of time. The meeting also included a roundtable discussion with Orlando community leaders, and according to Tamara Keith of NPR it had Clinton doing "lots of listening."
Clinton then proceeded this afternoon to the site of the shooting itself, which claimed the lives of 49 people, many of them gay men who frequented the Latin-themed dance club on Saturday nights. The club and the fencing that now surrounds it have become a large memorial to the victims, and Clinton laid a bouquet of white roses there.
While not trying to politicize the tragedy, the move can certainly be seen as Clinton showing her support for and sympathy with the LGBT community in the wake of the close of the RNC and the virulently anti-equality platform the GOP decided to adopt this election year.
Coincidentally, Clinton was in Orlando just as another deadly mass shooting was taking place in Munich, Germany, about which Clinton tweeted as she was boarding her jet for an event in Tampa.
Clinton is also expected to announce her running mate today or tomorrow, and the top contender right now appears to be Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia.
Clinton at Pulse with a bouquet of white roses. No words to describe seeing the tributes to victims here. pic.twitter.com/gBREfqV0fY— Ruby Cramer (@rubycramer) July 22, 2016
Clinton outside Pulse in Orlando pic.twitter.com/jWcu5azhLD— Jennifer Epstein (@jeneps) July 22, 2016
Hillary Clinton is paying respects at the Pulse nightclub memorial in Orlando pic.twitter.com/zF6fw8sw6D— Monica Alba (@albamonica) July 22, 2016