“Thoughts & Prayers”: New House Speaker Mike Johnson’s Classic Tune After Another Tragic Shooting

Hot on the heels of the devastating Lewiston, Maine mass shooting, which claimed 18 lives and left many more injured, the spotlight has turned to our newly minted House Speaker, Mike Johnson. And what’s his solution to this recurring American nightmare? You guessed it: “thoughts and prayers.”

Our new Speaker, straight out of Louisiana, is no stranger to courting controversy when it comes to the Second Amendment. Fun fact: The alleged perpetrator of this massacre was described by pals as a “gun fanatic.” Shocked? Didn’t think so.

Johnson has been cozying up with the gun industry and waving the pro-gun flag for as long as he’s been in Congress. Despite polls showing that most of us — yes, the young, the old, and everyone in between — favor tighter gun regulations, Johnson seems more interested in photo-ops with pro-gun groups than actually addressing the problem.

Peep this: Johnson has often peddled the theory that gun violence is a symptom of America’s waning faith and the disintegration of “family values.” Yeah, because somehow secularization is the real culprit behind the trigger, not lax gun laws.

He’s even gone as far as to slam those pushing for gun reform as being on a mission to “disarm the populace,” with complete disdain for the Constitution. Oh, and remember the Boulder, Colorado tragedy in 2021? Johnson’s response was a resounding call to “guard the Second Amendment.” His diagnosis? Blaming “mentally disturbed” individuals for the violence, ignoring the evidence that most shooters aren’t actually suffering from mental illness.

What’s more, when Congress tried to do something with a modest bipartisan gun law last year, guess who voted against it? Yep, our man Johnson. This bill was no revolution; it simply aimed to boost funding for mental health, amp up school safety, and tighten background checks for young gun buyers. Sounds reasonable, right? Not for Johnson.

Of course, the NRA and their buddies are having a field day, painting Johnson as a “Second Amendment stalwart.” David Workman, from the far-right site Ammoland.com, gave Johnson a pat on the back, reminding everyone that “gun owners have a friend” in the Speaker.

Fast forward to Maine’s tragedy: Johnson’s “thoughts and prayers” spiel is eerily reminiscent of the GOP’s age-old refrain after these massacres. His vague pleas for an end to “senseless violence” ring hollow when paired with his action (or lack thereof) on gun reform.

But, the resistance is vocal. Criticism is pouring in, calling out Johnson’s consistent track record of sidelining gun reform. As Democratic strategist Victor Shi put it, we don’t need another “thought or prayer.” We want action. We demand action.

The advocacy group Giffords nailed it, highlighting Johnson’s repeated vote-downs on bipartisan gun safety efforts. Their verdict? Johnson consistently chooses the gun lobby over the safety of the American people.