Democratic presidential candidates spoke out Sunday against President ’s racist and xenophobic rhetoric, linking it to the as police are investigating whether the suspected gunman, a 21-year-old white man, was motivated by .

For former Rep. (D-Texas), Saturday’s violence that killed and injured dozens more struck the city he calls home.

“We’ve got to acknowledge the hatred, the open racism that we’re seeing,” he told ’s Jake Tapper. “There is an environment of it in the United States. We see it on Fox News, we see it on the internet, but we also see it from our commander in chief. He is encouraging this. He doesn’t just tolerate it, he encourages it.” 

Beto O’Rourke on the El Paso

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