In the wake of a national tragedy it seems appropriate to cite the comments the candidates have made in reference to the shooting that happened at Virginia Tech yesterday. Some offer condolences, some offer prayers, some offer community and support, but they all try to grapple with the difficult question of how to deal with grief and loss. Many of these come from CNN, others were emails from the campaign or official posted statements.

Republicans:
Mayor Rudy Giuliani
“On this day of national tragedy, when we lost some of our finest to a senseless act, we stand together as a country to mourn those who lost their lives. My thoughts and prayers continue to be with the survivors and the many friends, colleagues and family members of those who perished. May God bless them all.”

Senator John McCain
“I am shocked and saddened to hear the news of today’s events. This inconceivable tragedy was a horrific act of cruelty that took the lives of so many innocent young people, cutting their lives short and inflicting tremendous pain on all of those who loved them. Cindy and I extend our deepest sympathies and prayers to the students, faculty, friends and family of the Virginia Tech community.”

Former Gov. Mitt Romney
“The entire nation grieves for the victims of this terrible tragedy that took place today on the campus of Virginia Tech. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families and the entire Virginia Tech community. Our full support is behind the law enforcement officials who are involved with stabilizing the situation and conducting an investigation.”

Democrats:

Senator Barack Obama
“There are going to major tragedies that we hear about as we heard about today at Virginia Tech and I can only imagine what its like for parents who still can’t get in touch with their kids from all over the country. We pray for them.” (During a campaign event in Chicago)

Senator Hillary Clinton
“I am shocked and saddened by the horrific tragedy at Virginia Tech. My prayers are with the victims and their families, as well as the students, faculty, and community devastated by these gruesome killings. As a parent, I am filled with sorrow for the mothers and fathers and loved ones struggling with the sudden, unbearable news of a lost son or daughter, friend or family member. This tragedy is still unfolding and I hope as a nation we can come together and keep in our thoughts all those affected as we learn more about the events which took place this morning.” (Issued statement)

Former Senator John Edwards
“We are simply heartbroken by the deaths and injuries suffered at Virginia Tech. We know what an unspeakable, life-changing moment this is for these families and how, in this moment, it is hard to feel anything but overwhelming grief, much less the love and support around you. But the love and support is there. We pray that these families, these students, and the entire Virginia Tech community know that they are being embraced by a nation. There is a Methodist hymn that gave us solace in such a moment as this, and we repeat its final verse here, in hopes it will help these families, as it helped us:

‘In our end is our beginning; in our time, infinity;
In our doubt there is believing, in our life, eternity,
In our death, a resurrection; at the last, a victory,
Unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.’

Our dearest wish is that this day could start again, with the promise of these young people alive. Knowing that cannot be, our prayer is for God’s grace and whatever measure of peace can be reached on this terrible day.” (Issued statement)

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