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Texas Governor Cancels Shotgun-Giveaway Plan after School Shooting

Browning shotguns are displayed during the annual National Rifle Association (NRA) convention in Dallas, Texas, May 6, 2018. (Lucas Jackson/Reuters)

Texas governor Greg Abbott has changed his campaign’s plans to give away a shotgun, after a 17-year-old male student shot and killed eight students and two teachers and wounded at least 13 others with a shotgun and a .38 revolver Friday morning at Santa Fe High School in Santa Fe, Texas.

The Republican governor’s re-election campaign had originally planned to award the contest winner a “Texas-made shotgun,” but changed the prize to a $250 gift card over the weekend.

“It has been changed,” a spokesman told the Dallas Morning News. “Now it’s just a contest for a $250 gift certificate.” A picture of Abbott holding a shotgun was also removed from the website for the contest, which does not require any monetary contribution from participants.

Gun-control advocates expressed outrage at the shotgun raffle over the weekend and pressured the governor to cancel it.

“To put it bluntly, we find this a disgusting display of disregard of the toll gun violence takes and an absolute failure to respect your constituents in the wake of the #SantaFe shootings,” the Austin chapter of the gun-control group March for Our Lives wrote on Twitter.

Matthew Hogenmiller, 16, the leader of the chapter, said that he hopes the prize money will be given to survivors’ funds for the recent shooting instead.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew White also took a shot at the governor, tweeting out a picture of an advertisement for the giveaway.

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