News & Politics

Sarah Sanders Chokes Up as Child Asks Heartbreaking Question About School Shootings—But She Struggles to Defend White House Inaction

"Can you tell me what the administration has done and will do to prevent these tragedies?"

Photo Credit: Fox News

In an unusual moment for a White House press briefing, press secretary Sarah Sanders choked up on Wednesday as she responded to a young child's question about school shootings.

"At my school, we recently had a lockdown drill," the boy asked. "One thing that affects mine and other students' mental health is the worry about the fact that we or our friends could get shot at school. Specifically, can you tell me what the administration has done and will do to prevent these tragedies?"

"I think that as a kid, and certainly as a parent, there is nothing that could be more terrifying for a kid to go to school and not feel safe," Sanders said, her voice cracking with emotion. "So I'm sorry that you feel that way. This administration takes it seriously, and the school safety commission that the president convened is meeting this week again in an official meeting to discuss the best ways forward and how we can do every single thing within our power to protect kids in our schools, and to make them feel safe and to make their parents feel good about dropping them off."

Though she clearly empathized with the child's fear, Sanders' answer left a lot to be desired. She gave no concrete answer to the first part of the question about what the administration has done to prevent shootings — because so little has been done.

Pointing to the school safety commission is largely an empty gesture since we don't need more commissions to tell us how to reduce gun violence. Experts agree that a range of new gun laws — many of which are quite popular — would be effective in reducing gun violence in the United States. The key problem is that Republicans, up to and including the White House, are uniformly opposed to making any progress on strengthening the country's gun laws.

Watch the clip below:

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Cody Fenwick is a reporter and editor. Follow him on Twitter @codytfenwick.