- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 20, 2018

Member of both parties in Nevada’s congressional delegation have denounced Rep. Scott Perry, Pennsylvania Republican, for baselessly claiming that Islamic State terrorists were involved in killing dozens of people during a country music festival in Las Vegas last fall.

Mr. Perry linked the Las Vegas massacre to the terrorist organization known as ISIS during a recent Fox News appearance, triggering outrage from Nevadans on both sides of the aisle Friday in the form of a letter demanding he make amends.

“We write to request an immediate apology for your insulting comments on cable television last night, suggesting without evidence, and contradicting the assessment of law enforcement, that the October 1, 2017 shooting at the Route 91 Harvest festival in Las Vegas was linked to international terrorism, specifically placing the blame on ISIS,” wrote a group of lawmakers led by Rep. Jacky Rosen, Nevada Democrat.

“Your conspiracy theory does disrespect to the Congress and your position it, and only a sincere apology can rectify the damage you have caused. Therefore, on behalf of the 58 innocent Americans killed in the attack, the more than 500 injured, their family, friends and loved ones, and the community and nation that mourns them, we demand you apologize immediately,” the letter concluded.

Mr. Perry, a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, did not immediately return an email seeking comment.

Police have determined that Stephen Paddock, 64, opened fire on a crowd of concertgoers from his hotel room on 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino on the evening of Oct. 1 before subsequently dying of a self-inflected gunshot wound. Authorities have failed to find a motive for the massacre nearly four months after the fact, but the FBI previously said investigators found no nexus to terrorism.

“I smell a rat, like a lot of Americans. Nothing’s adding up,” Mr. Perry said during an appearance on on “Tucker Carlson Tonight” Thursday.

“It’s been four months, as you said, the man’s dead, they said he’s a lone gunman, lone shooter, yet we can’t get the autopsy results,” Mr. Perry continued. “But even more troubling than that, I’ve been made aware of what I believe to be credible evidence, credible information, regarding terrorist infiltration through the southern border regarding this incident.”

Mr. Perry was pressed during the broadcast to disclose further details about his claim, but he said that he was “not able” to provide specifics.

Mr. Perry “should know better than to peddle a poorly-sourced conspiracy theory,” Ms. Rosen said in a statement afterwards. “His comments add more pain to this tragedy and it undermines the hard work of our local law enforcement in Clark County.”

Friday’s letter was co-signed by Democratic Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto and Republican Sen. Dean Heller, as well as Reps. Dina Titus and Ruben Kihuen, both Democrats.

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