Vermont Gov. on Gun Control: ‘You Need a 50-State Solution... We’re Not Living in the Middle Ages’

By Jose R. Gonzalez | February 22, 2016 | 3:41pm EST


Gov. Peter Shumlin poses with a six-point buck he shot in 2013 on the opening day of deer season in Vermont. (AP photo)


( -- “We’re not living in the Middle Ages,” Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin said Friday as he called for national gun control legislation. 

“My view on gun legislation is this: You will not solve this problem state by state. You need a 50-state solution, and we better come up with one fast,” Shumlin said last week at Politico’s Sixth Annual State Solutions Conference at the Microsoft Innovation and Policy Center in Washington, D.C.   

Shumlin pushed for a "50-state solution" despite coming from a rural state where guns are commonly used for hunting. 

“There’s no question there’s a different culture with guns and a different challenge for politicians in urban and rural states,” he said in response to a question made via Twitter about balancing public safety with Second Amendment rights..

“You know, Vermonters treat guns, we use guns to manage our deer herd, to manage our natural resources. And you know, you learn about guns at a very young age from, like me, my dad. 

“You know, I’m a hunter. I’m a Democrat, but I hunt deer. I know I’m not supposed to as a Democrat, but I do,” he said.

“Listen, we’ve got a huge problem, Houston. We do,” Shumlin asserted in response to a question about whether urban Democrats are unfairly stereotyped as being anti-hunting.

“We have a bunch of, you know, we’ve got assault weapons, all kinds of things you wouldn’t use to kill a white-tailed deer out there and they’re being used to kill people. So listen, we’re not, we’re not living in the Middle Ages.”

However, the governor also noted that much of the gun violence in America occurs between rival drug dealers.

“A lot of our gun deaths are related to drug dealing. Let’s be honest about this. So yeah, we need a 50-state solution. No question about it. And I think both rural and urban Democrats agree about that,” added Shumlin, who has served six years as governor of the Green Mountain State.

Shumlin, who was elected to his first two-year term as governor in 2010, signed into law a bill last May imposing restrictions on gun ownership in Vermont.

The following month, he announced he was not running for reelection.  

The Politico event featured remarks by a number of other governors who traveled to the nation’s capital to attend the annual National Governor’s Association winter meeting held on Sunday.

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