Klobuchar: 'There Is an Opening Here' for More Gun Control

Susan Jones | October 6, 2017 | 9:28am EDT
Font Size
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) sees "an opening here" for gun control legislation. (Photo: Screen grab from MSNBC's "Morning Joe.")

(CNSNews.com) - One day after the National Rifle Association agreed with various Republicans that bump stocks may need to be regulated, Democrat Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota saw an "opening" for additional gun control measures.

"Well, this is one of the first times we've heard Republicans even open to talking about any kind of restrictions like this," Klobuchar told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" on Friday.

"And I think it's very important to have this discussion and to pass something. Action is necessary here. The fact that these bump stocks are legal when they do something illegal...they should be banned."

The National Rifle Association on Thursday said it believes bump stocks "should be subject to additional regulations" by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, but it did not call for a legislative ban.

In addition to a bump stock ban, Klobuchar is pushing for universal background checks on any and every gun sale:

"So there are a number of us, including some Republicans, who have supported sensible background checks in addition to, of course, banning things like bump stocks. And so I'm hopeful that we will be able to take action. There is an opening here. And it's time to do something sensible.

"The marrow is to get at what happened, but you also could look at revisiting the background check issue, which is the gun show loophole."

The "gun show loophole" refers to private individuals selling their own weapons at gun shows. Federally licensed firearms dealers, who comprise the bulk of sellers at gun shows, are required by law to conduct background checks on prospective buyers, but private (unlicensed) sellers are not.  It's not like all buyers at gun shows are exempt from background checks, although that's the implication from liberals.

The Las Vegas killer obtained his guns legally and passed background checks, police said.

Slippery slope

At a news conference on Thursday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) embraced the "slippery slope" to more gun control that Second Amendment defenders worry about.

"We've said where we'd like to go, and that's in a bipartisan place, which is the bipartisan bill, King-Thompson" (universal background checks), Pelosi said.

"Now, there are background checks, but there are loopholes: whether they're online sales, or gun show sales, but a lot can happen from people who shouldn't be getting guns. And we have evidence that having the background checks has prevented hundreds of thousands, if not a couple million sales...that could have caused a death.

"So as I said, many people who are serious gun owners say, 'I have a background check; they should have a background check, too.' But we can't -- you know, that -- that -- let's -- so what? They're going to say, if you give them bump stock, it's going to be the slippery slope. I certainly hope so! But I don't think bump stock should be a substitute for the background check."

In other words, Pelosi wants both a ban on bump stocks as well as Republican concessions on background checks.

"And by the way, the background check is a compromise," Pelosi continued. "There are many more things members want to do, and we're saying: How do we save the most lives? We save the most lives with a background check. So, we just have to have that fight."

Appearing with Fox News's Tucker Carlson Thursday night, Chris Cox, the executive director of the NRA's lobbying arm, said the real goal of Democrats such as Sen. Dianne Feinstein is to have all Americans turn in their guns. "Dianne Feinstein said it herself, when she said, if I had 51 votes, Mr. and Mrs. America, turn them all in."

Cox said Americans "are looking for answers, but the American people are also looking for...Congress to respect the Second Amendment. And that's why we're calling on Congress to do something. Let ATF do their job (on bump stocks), and Congress needs to do their job  -- allow good, honest people the ability to defend themselves,  pass reforms like national right to carry reciprocity, and then have a broader conversation about what we can do to keep people safer."

Cox noted that gun control, including gun bans in some places, have not stopped massacres in the U.S. or Europe.

He said the NRA exists to make sure Americans are not left defenseless.

mrc merch