October 3, 2017

Mika Brzezinski thought she needed to explain to viewers why no Republicans were talking about the Las Vegas massacre on Morning Joe today.

"We just want to mention that we did ask a number of Republicans to be on this morning --you're seeing a lot of democratic lawmakers joining us this morning --and they all declined," she said.

Gee, I wonder why. Because they're cowards? And because none of their standard dog-whistle, blame the victim tactics work on a crowd of white, straight, country music fans?

Sen. Chris Murphy got right to the point.

"The fact of the matter is, the entire country is focused on why this happened," he said.

"And the reality is that much of it is rooted in the evil inside this one individual, but much of it is rooted in our laws which allowed him to get his hands on weapons that are illegal in almost every other civilized country.

"Maybe he still would have taken a pistol and killed dozens below but it would have been difficult without the semi-automatic weapon and the modifications legal in this country. I think we have to talk about change immediately. And the fact of the matter is, while everybody is focussed on Las Vegas, mass shootings represent 1% of the gun casualties in this country," he said.

"Every single day, people are being killed by guns. And we need to talk about what's happening in Baltimore and Chicago and Hartford on a daily basis. We can't just bring this up when there's an enormous max execution execution." (Editor's note: Ah, but those are black people being killed! No biggie!)

Willie Geist asked what "what would have stopped this man in Las Vegas from going up in that hotel room and breaking out the window and shooting be into that crowd?"

"There are two Nevada gun stores who say he passed federal background checks. Not a lot in his past that would have been red flags to people. How could this have been prevented? Is there a law? Congressman Hines said yes, he would be for a ban on semi automatic rifles. How about you?"

Murphy said he would support that, and pointed out that the pace of the epic mass shootings, "10 or more people being killed doubled after the assault weapons ban expired."

He said he would also look at the after-market modifications.

"I think the gun lobby wants you, in the wake of one of these shootings, to only talk about the policy changes that would have affected the shooting that happened the day before. We have to get back to the evergreen changes, things like universal background checks that probably would have stopped many of the other murders around the country that happened the Sunday before the shooting in Las Vegas. I think the gun industry wants us to only talk about the policy change that would have affected yesterday's mass shootings. Background is the most likely legislation through congress because it enjoys widespread public approval and is probably most dispositive on the amount of gun violence that happens every day across this country."

"I understand, but it's worth talking about what would have prevented the deaths of over 50 people. He passed these background checks. To be specific, ban bump stocks and ban semi automatic rives. Are you for that?" Geist asked.

"I'm for both of those things," Murphy said. "I think we ask ourselves a question every day in and around Newtown. It's not just a question of the specific damage that these weapons do. They allow you to kill a lot more people, but in Newtown we ask yourselves whether he would have walked into that school without tactical weaponry.

"There's a false, bizarre kind of courage that comes with attaching yourself to these kind of very powerful weapons, and there is a question as to whether the shooters would ever take up position if all they had was a pistol instead of a dangerous military-style weapons."

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