President Barack Obama, Mitt Romney and the super PACs affiliated with both candidates announced Friday they are halting their advertising in the wake of a mass shooting in Aurora, Colo., that took the lives of 12 people and injured at least 50 others.
As a key swing state, Colorado has been flooded with political ads this cycle, but the presidential campaigns and outside groups on both sides moved to take a pause on Friday.
A representative for the Obama campaign confirmed to The Huffington Post that affiliates in Colorado have been asked to suspend all advertising for the time being.
The spokeswoman cautioned that it takes time for stations to process such requests, but the campaign is "making every effort." The Romney campaign said it is halting all its ads in the state "until further notice."
Super PACs supporting both candidates also issued statements that they will pull all advertising for the time being. For pro-Obama super PAC Priorities USA Action, that includes the Spanish-language ad released in conjunction with labor group Service Employees International Union Friday morning.
"Priorities is suspending advertising in Colorado," wrote Priorities strategist Bill Burton. "Our prayers are with the victims of this horrible tragedy."
Karl Rove-backed super PAC American Crossroads said it will no longer run in Colorado its spot defending Romney against Bain Capital attacks. That ad had been announced as part of a $9.3 million ad buy in nine states on Thursday. Steven Law, the super PAC's president, issued the following statement:
In moments of tragedy like the Aurora shooting, we all stand together as Americans and are reminded of the precious gifts of life, family and community that we share. We pause to honor and pray for those whose lives have been tragically cut short, as well as those who must bear this terrible loss. And we give thanks for the powerful spirit of compassion and concern that unites us all in our country and reaches out to those who are in the crucible of suffering.
Obama addressed the tragedy on Friday in Fort Myers, Fla., where he originally had been scheduled to hold a campaign event. "There are going to be other days for politics," he said. "This is a day for prayer and reflection." The president canceled a second event in Orlando and will instead return to Washington, D.C.
Romney canceled a campaign rally and is expected to address the shootings later in Bow, N.H.
This story has been updated to indicate that the Obama campaign clarified at 2:05 p.m. that it is moving to suspend all advertising in Colorado, not just negative ads, as a campaign spokeswoman had previously indicated.
View the president's remarks, below.
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