People Magazine
October 29, 2018 3:00 pm
Alex Wong/Getty Images

Kellyanne Conway suggested that late-night comedians’ “anti-religiosity” was a motivator for the massacre that killed 11 people at a Pittsburgh synagogue on Saturday, October 27th.

“And remember, these people were gunned down in their place of worship, as were the people in South Carolina several years ago, and they were there because they’re people of faith, and it’s that faith that needs to bring us together,” she continued. “This is no time to be driving God out of the public square, no time to be making fun of people.”

Suspected shooter Robert Bowers allegedly killed worshipers during a Shabbat service at the Tree of Life synagogue in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood. The dead included siblings, a husband and wife and a 97-year-old woman. Four responding police officers were among the six people wounded.

Bowers has been charged with 29 federal crimes, most of which carry a maximum penalty of death, U.S. Attorney Scott Brady told reporters Sunday, October 28th.

The Internet was quick to react. The Daily Show tweeted, “Hey @KellyannePolls, if late night shows are so anti-religious, why did God create TEN THOUSAND of them?”

Earlier in the interview, Conway defended President Donald Trump‘s response to the shooting and pushed back against accusations that his harsh political rhetoric has encouraged violence and contributed to the shooting.

“He denounced anti-Semitism in all forms. He said we must rise above this evil. He’s called for the death penalty for this murderer in Pittsburgh who gunned down 11 innocent people because of their faith, and he said the word ‘anti-Semitism,’ ‘anti-Semite’ any number of times,” Conway said. “This president is asking us to rise above it and asking us to come together and unify as a nation, and anybody who’s saying he isn’t isn’t listening.”

On Monday, October 29th, Trump tweeted that the “anger” in the United States was “in part” due to the media.

“There is great anger in our Country caused in part by inaccurate, and even fraudulent, reporting of the news,” he wrote. “The Fake News Media, the true Enemy of the People, must stop the open & obvious hostility & report the news accurately & fairly. That will do much to put out the flame…of Anger and Outrage and we will then be able to bring all sides together in Peace and Harmony. Fake News Must End!”

Trump and First Lady Melania Trump will go to Pittsburgh on Tuesday, October 30th to visit with victims’ families, according to a pool report. More than 35,000 people have signed a letter asking Trump not to visit Pittsburgh until he speaks out against white nationalism, The Washington Post reported.