A Campaign on Pause - But Not on Break

PHOTO: President Barack Obama hugs Stephanie Davies, who helped keep her friend, Allie Young, left, alive after she was shot during the movie theatre shootings in Aurora, Colo., July 22, 2012.Official White House Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama hugs Stephanie Davies, who helped keep her friend, Allie Young, left, alive after she was shot during the movie theatre shootings in Aurora, Colo., July 22, 2012.

Four days after a senseless attack at a movie theater in Colorado, the two candidates for president remain in a somber and respectful mode. The fiery rhetoric and personal attacks on the campaign stump have been put on hold. But, while the overt campaigning may be suspended, the actual work of the campaign – fundraising in particular – continues.

And, just a few minutes ago, Obama adviser David Axelrod broke the silence with a tweet.

At a fundraiser last night in San Francisco, Mitt Romney thanked President Obama for his trip to Aurora, saying that it was "the right thing for the president to be doing this day. I appreciate that." Romney then told his audience that his remarks would "not be as partisan as normal and instead I am going to talk about my vision for the country, in part keeping with the seriousness and the thoughts of the day. We obviously have heavy hearts. It is a reminder of loss, a loss of young minds and youthful voices and soaring spirits lost senselessly and thoughtlessly. We turn to a power greater than our own to understand purpose and if not to understand at least to be able to soothe the wounds of those who have been seriously hurt."

The Obama campaign canceled a big grassroots rally that had been planned in Portland on Tuesday. Obama's speech today at the VFW Convention in Reno will focus on "his administration's work to secure our nation, fight terrorism, renew American leadership in the world, better serve our troops and military families and honor our veterans," said White House press secretary Jay Carney on Sunday. The speech will not involve overt electioneering or direct contrasts with rival Mitt Romney, Obama's campaign aides say.

Vice President Joe Biden is scheduled to speak Monday to the National Association of Police Organizations in Palm Beach, Fla., where he is expected to address the law enforcement community's response to the shooting.

But, while the campaign ads may be off the air in Colorado, the attacks continue to pour over the airwaves in the other battleground states.

The fundraising continues as well. Obama is on the left coast for a total of nine fundraisers in California, Oregon, and Washington. Romney raises money in Irvine, California today.


HICKENLOOPER: HOLMES WOULD HAVE KILLED WITHOUT GUNS. Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, to ABC's George Stephanopoulos on "This Week": "This wasn't a Colorado problem, this was a human problem, right, and how we can have such a warped individual and no one around them be aware? You know, I worry that if we got rid of all the guns, and certainly we have so many guns in this country, and we do have a lot more gun violence than many other countries, but even if he didn't have access to guns, this guy was diabolical, right? He would have found explosives, he would have found something else, some sort of poisonous gas. He would've done something to create this horror."

JOE KLEIN: DEMS HAVE 'CHECKED OUT' SINCE '94. Joe Klein, in ABC's "This Week" roundtable: " … politicians stopped talking about this. In 1994 the Democrats lost the House. The mythology that evolved from that was that the National Rifle Association picked various congressional districts and defeated Democrats who supported gun control. I don't know that that's entirely true, but Democrats have checked out of this debate ever since, including the president of the United States, and so there hasn't been a debate about gun control since then.

GEORGE WILL: GUN LAWS CAN'T PREVENT ANOTHER AURORA. More from ABC's "This Week" roundtable: "The killer in Aurora, Colorado was very intelligent and farsighted and meticulous. I defy you to write a gun-control law that would prevent someone like this with a long time horizon and a great planning capability from getting the arms he wants. I just think that this is a mistake."

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