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GOP 49
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Maine Site of Latest Mass Shooting

As you have undoubtedly heard by now, there was yet another mass shooting, this one in Lewiston, ME—a smallish town about 40 miles north of Portland, and about 40 miles east of New Hampshire. The incident left at least 18 people dead, and that number is expected to grow. By contrast, Maine had 29 homicides in all of 2022. The alleged shooter, Robert Card, is still at large and is the target of an intensive manhunt.

There have been two politics-related developments connected with this news. First, Rep. Jared Golden (D-ME), perhaps the most centrist Democrat in the House, announced that he has changed positions on assault weapons, and now supports a ban. On one hand, this was close to home, so it's not surprising that this has opened Golden's eyes. On the other hand, is this substantively different from what happened in Uvalde or Las Vegas or Buffalo? Why was Golden able to look the other way so easily when it was Texans, Nevadans and New Yorkers being slaughtered?

Second, Mike Johnson might be a rookie when it comes to some aspects of his new job, but he showed himself to be a veteran when it comes to mass shooting responses. Appearing on Sean Hannity's show, Johnson said: "Our prayers have been with the situation the families of that tragedy. Everyone in the House was dialed in on that all day, and it's really something. So, just to address that at the front end. We'd be remiss if we didn't mention it." He also added: "At the end of the day, the problem is the human heart. It's not guns, it's not the weapons. At the end of the day, we have to protect the right of the citizens to protect themselves and that's the Second Amendment. And that's why our party stands so strongly for that." So, that's: (1) thoughts and prayers, and (2) blaming something other than the guns.

Now, the part of the write-up where we talk about what might plausibly change as a result of this latest tragedy, or what good might plausibly come out of it:

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