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Republican who blamed Uvalde school shooting on ‘transgender medicine’ wins primary

Amelia Hansford June 15, 2022
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Michele Fiore thanks the men and women of Creech Air Force Based (Photo: Creech Air Force/Haley Stevens)

Republican politician Michele Fiore won a Nevada primary just weeks after blaming the Uvalde school shooting on “transgender medicine.”

Fiore, of Las Vegas, Nevada, linked the shooting that took the lives of 19 students and two teachers to health care for trans individuals during a campaign event on June 5.

In an attempt to dismiss ongoing calls for gun control measures, she claimed that pharmaceutical companies could be to blame.

“You know what we have to ban?” she said. “We have to ban the pharmaceutical companies that are giving these individuals pharmaceutical psychotropic drugs.”

Her argument rested on the baseless rumour that Uvalde shooter was trans. Fiore claimed that the shooter was “on a lot of different medications from transgendering [sic], so his mind was quite defective.” There is no evidence to suggest that this is true.

Fiore, currently a serving Las Vegas City Council member, secured the Republican nomination for Nevada state treasurer in a 14 June primary. She will face incumbent Democrat Zach Conine.

Several Republican politicians have falsely attempted to link shooter Salvador Rolando Ramos to the trans community, including Arizona representative Paul Gosar, who called the shooter a “leftist illegal alien” in a since-deleted tweet.

Several images of trans individuals were also falsely used in place of the real shooter.

One trans woman whose photos were wrongly used came forward and said she’d been targeted with abuse as a result.

A screenshot of Paul Gosar’s Tweet. [Twitter Screenshot]

Notorious far-right representative Marjorie Taylor Greene also pushed the conspiracy theory, saying in a Facebook broadcast that the shooter “clearly had a lot of mental issues going on, as was shown with him wearing eyeliner, cross-dressing, a lot of his language, being a loner.”

In the wake of the Uvalde shooting, Texas lawmaker Ted Cruz suggested that the real issue wasn’t access to assault rifles, but schools having too many entrances.

Since the shooting, groups have renewed long-standing calls to enact gun control regulations and fund mental health care that would mitigate the frequency of the shootings in America.

Bernie Sanders – a common proponent of gun control laws – took to Twitter the day after the shooting to say “no one in America needs an AR-15,” the weapon that the shooter used.

On 12 June, a bipartisan group of Senate negotiators announced a deal for a narrow set of gun safety measures that they say has enough support to pass through the deeply divided Congress.

The agreement, struck by 10 Republicans and 10 Democrats, includes stronger background checks for under-21s and banning domestic abusers from purchasing guns.

Many have warned that much stricter rules are needed, including a ban on assault weapons.

According to Education Week, there have been approximately 27 fatal school shootings in America this year alone.

The Uvalde shooting took place on May 24 and is considered to be one of the deadliest shootings to have taken place. Shooter Ramos was eventually killed by Border Patrol Agents.

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