Comedian Chelsea Handler has come under fire after blaming Republicans for the Texas mass shooting, which left 26 people dead and dozens injured.

Lone gunman Devin Patrick Kelley opened fire at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, around 11.30am local time (5.30pm GMT) on Sunday (5 November) killing worshippers from age five to 72.

As news broke of the atrocity, Handler, who has been extremely vocal about ending gun violence, took to Twitter to share her thoughts on the latest US mass shooting with her 8.2 million followers.

"Innocent people go to church on Sunday to honor their God, and while doing so, get shot in killed," she wrote. "What country? America. Why? Republicans."

The divisive post has 26K comments and counting, with people either praising or slating the former chat show host.

"This is new low from the left. Sad time in our country and you decide to take a cheap shot. Please Pray for the victims and their families," one person said. Another added: "Does your career depend on you being a vile, callous person, or is that a personal choice?"

A third commentator accused Handler of politicising the tragedy: "The bodies aren't even cold yet and you are politicizing them. You really have a dark heart. #NastyWoman".

But she wasn't short of people in her corner: "Republicans have stood in the way of every single attempt at sensible gun control that would help prevent atrocities like this," one person said.

Another stated: "Urging Republicans to talk about a serious matter is important. We're Americans we look for, we talk about, we find solutions. Join in!"

Back in June, Chandler earned an award from the Brady Centre to Prevent Gun Violence for her commitment to changing the country's "disgusting" gun legislation.

"Obviously, [the state of] gun control in this country is totally unacceptable, and the gun lobby is so strong and so powerful that anytime a celebrity can bring attention to this cause — among many other [causes] — you know it's an easy thing for anyone to do," she said.

"We're way behind the times in terms of gun control in this country, and it doesn't seem like it's going anywhere anytime soon. Our voices just need to keep getting louder, and the people that make an impact need to really just step up and stick their necks out a little bit more.

She added: "We should've heightened all of the restrictions on buying guns, and we just loosened restrictions on buying guns, which made it easier for mentally unstable people to purchase firearms. It's disgusting."

Comedienne Chelsea Handler arrives to attend the 21st annual Glamour Magazine Women of the Year award ceremony in New York
Comedienne Chelsea Handler arrives to attend the 21st annual Glamour Magazine Women of the Year award ceremony in New York Reuters