Morning Joe featured an unexpectedly intense argument over the legal aspects of gun control today, with Ted Cruz of course pushing for unfettered gun access. It got personal more than once, with Cruz lawsplaining that he knows what the Supreme Court does because he built a career on arguing before SCOTUS.
"I don't need you to lecture me on what the Supreme Court does and doesn't do," Joe Scarborough said.
"If the Supreme Court denies cert time and time again, and they have since 2010, and they have allowed Connecticut's laws to stand in place that actually ban assault-style weapons right now, the Court is sitting back and they are allowing that to remain in place and allowing that.
"That is constitutional right now. There is not a constitutional right, and you know it, and you can talk down to me all you want to, but you know there is not a constitutional..." he said.
"Who is talking down to whom?" Cruz said. "You say lawyers are rolling their eyes at me."
"You said this is what you do. I understand that, but I do understand this, even a dumb country lawyer like me understands that an AR-15 is not recognized as a right under the amendment," Scarborough said.
"Actually, under the test the Supreme Court laid out, whether an instrument of defense is in common, in popular usage, the AR-15 is one at most common. It is clearly protected," Cruz argued.
"So you would think that the Supreme Court of the United States would accept one of these cases," Scarborough retorted. "And you were talking about what you want the law to be."
Cruz aid the test Scalia laid out is this a weapon that is "commonly desired."
"It says they shall not be infringed. The right of the people is a term of art. Your point about denying cert, they grant cert in 70 to 80 cases. It has no precedential value."
"But if there is a constitutional right that is infringed upon that by at least four members of the Court, they will accept cert and listen to that," Scarborough said. "I give you credit for swatting away what is legal reality."
"Can I make the point that matters the most? If you want to stop violent crime this debate is dancing on the head of the pin."
There was a lot more, but you get the idea.