Former Republican Governor Rick Perry of Texas referred to the shooting in Charleston, South Carolina, as an "accident" today.
Perry made his comments during an online interview with Newsmax (video below).
That segment of the interview began with a clip of President Obama saying that the Charleston shooting was caused by "someone who wanted to inflict harm and had no trouble getting their hands on a gun."
Perry responded, "Well, that's always the knee-jerk reaction, is that if we can just take the guns out of the hands of everyone in this country, these kids of things wouldn't happen."
Except that's not what President Obama actually said. The president has never suggested taking away everyone's guns.
Perry went on to talk about Texas' high school graduation rate, which he said was second in the country and the best for African-Americans.
Governing.com reported that the graduation rates in Texas were improving in 2014, but some officials said that was because the state's standards for graduation have been systematically lowered to the point of functional illiteracy.
Perry later added:
This is the MO of this administration, anytime there is an accident like this, you know, the president is clear, he doesn’t like for Americans to have guns and so he uses every opportunity, this being another one, to basically go parrot that message.
Perry then moved the topic to the terrorist shooting in France and prescription medication:
Also, I think there is a real issue to be talked about, it seems to me, again without having all the details about this one, that these individuals have been medicated and there may be a real issue in this country from the standpoint of these drugs and how they’re used.
Perry campaign advisor Lexi Stemple responded to Perry's "accident" comment by telling Business Insider: "When watching the entire interview, it's clear from the context of his comments that Governor Perry meant incident."
In 2013, CityLab.com compared gun violence in U.S. cities to foreign countries and found that New Orleans, if it were a country, would rank second on the globe for gun murders; Washington D.C. had a higher rate than Brazil; Atlanta topped South Africa; Detroit is just under El Salvador; and Houston, from Perry's home state of Texas, had a higher gun murder rate than Ecuador.