What Is the Father of Orlando Shooter Omar Mateen Doing at a Hillary Clinton Rally?

A man identified as Seddique Mateen (C-red ball cap), whose son shot and killed 49 people and injured 53 others inside the Pulse nightclub in June, sits with supporters at a rally for Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton at the Osceola Heritage Park in Kissimmee, Florida on August 8, 2016. / AFP / Gregg Newton        (Photo credit should read GREGG NEWTON/AFP/Getty Images)

What Is the Father of Orlando Shooter Omar Mateen Doing at a Hillary Clinton Rally?

Here’s what the Clinton camp had to say.

Published August 9, 2016

During a rally held by Hillary Clinton in Kissimmee, Florida, a local news outlet recognized the face of a man with a red hat sitting behind Clinton. This man was Seddique Mateen (pictured above, center), the father of Orlando nightclub shooter Omar Mateen. 

The rally was held in order for Clinton to discuss several of her proposed economic policies. However, she began her speech by acknowledging the terrible tragedy that occurred in Orlando just a few months ago.

"I know how many people, families, loved ones, and friends are still grieving, and we will be with you as you rebuild your lives,” Clinton said, as Mateen looked on.

After the rally, WPTV caught up with Mateen to ask him a few questions regarding his presence at the event.

"We've been cooperating with the federal government, and that's about it," he said. "Thank you."

Mateen did not initially want to answer any questions; however, NewsChannel5 ran into Mateen later on in the night at a rest stop outside of West Palm Beach. When he saw the news team, he invited them over for an interview.

"Hillary Clinton is good for United States versus Donald Trump, who has no solutions," Mateen said.

When asked about whether or not the Clinton campaign was aware that he would be in attendance, Mateen said, “It's a Democratic Party, so everyone can join."

He was then asked if people should be surprised to see him a public event being held so close to the location of the Orlando shooting.

"Why should they be surprised?” Mateen said.  “I love the United States, and I've been living here a long time.”

When the Clinton camp was made aware of his presence, they released a statement that denied that they invited Mateen to the event.

“The rally was a 3,000-person, open-door event for the public,” said Tory Dunnan, a Clinton representative. “This individual wasn't invited as a guest and the campaign was unaware of his attendance until after the event."

What do you think of Mateen’s decision to attend the event? Let us know in the comment section below. 

Written by Rachel Herron

(Photo: GREGG NEWTON/AFP/Getty Images)


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