Jim Sciutto was interviewing NY Rep. Tom Reed ($3000 from the NRA in the last cycle, rated A by the NRA) yesterday when he segued to gun control, and it was satisfying to watch. Anchors seem to be a lot less willing to treat their improbable talking points as truth.
He said Trump said that he could support universal background checks, "but over the weekend he seems to have reversed himself, now saying, 'There are a lot of background checks out there.' "
"You voted against background check bills presented to the House before and I just wonder, can you explain to your constituents, to the American people why anyone who purchases a gun should not go through a background check. Why is that a necessity?" Sciutto asked. "Why is that such a big deal?"
"Well, because the heart of it is you're attacking -- you're attacking law-abiding citizens -- "
"You're not attacking them, you're just asking them to take a step that we take when we renew our driver's license. I mean, why is that such a grand infringement on the Second Amendment?"
"Because driver's license are much different than your fundamental right guaranteed by the Second Amendment of the Constitution. and to impose upon a law-abiding citizen, this requirement to me is too far. That is if you're going to do it on a universal background type of level I don't see that working, nor do I see it as something that respects the Second Amendment fundamental right protection for law-abiding citizens," Reed said. (Because it's all about the feelz!)
"Those law abiding citizens? A Quinnipiac poll found that 94% of registered voters, they support universal background checks. Are you listening to the voters or listening to the NRA?"
"No, I'm listening to voters. I will tell you we just held a bunch of town halls here recently, proud support for the Second Amendment came through."
"Most NRA members support universal background checks, why don't you?"
"Because when we're talking about universal background checks, when you ask that question, folks, you're not really asking the heart of the issue. If you're saying universal background check and somehow the government is going to have a database, going to have information, you share that with the people that you're polling, you're going to take my data, you're going to put me in a government system controlled by government officials, now those numbers fall down.
"So if you want to talk about the simple political headline of universal background check as a utopic position, then maybe you can get that type of poll result. when you actually delve down into the details, what it means with big data being controlled by government, people go, 'Whoa, I'm a law-abiding citizen.' "
"People do it when they apply for a driver's license. I don't see a dramatic difference. I want to show you a picture of the magazine that was used in the Dayton shooting. A hundred round magazine, what's called a barrel magazine. Should that be legal?"
"I don't believe banning objects is going to be the solution to this issue."
"Who needs a hundred round magazine? Who in this country needs a hundred round magazine? I've spent a lot of time in Iraq and Afghanistan -- I've never seen a barrel magazine like that in the hands of a U.S. soldier. Should it be legal? Simple question, yes or no."
"So I don't support that ban and that's an attack against law-abiding citizens. When you're go into those situations and going to talk about banning these objects we can have a political fight, but I will go after the who solution, who behind the ban is committing these crimes. You also have psychopathic mentally ill people out there on the streets that need to be addressed and --"
"Congressman, I've covered a lot of shootings. I was in El Paso and Dayton, they didn't have criminal records, they didn't have a mental health record. They were able to buy these guns. How does that measure? You'll often hear that from NRA supporters after mass shootings, but the measures you just suggested would not have prevented these."
"So look at the shooter, shot the six police officers in Philadelphia, lengthy criminal background with violent offenses. Look at shooter in Florida and multiple context with mental health -- "
"No one law would prevent -- "
"Well, of course, and that's where the root cause of the problem is. Why are people doing this? What is driving people to commit these crimes and these horrific acts? That is the harder question, and political panderers want to have a quick headline, and banning the object is easy. Taking on the who solutions is difficult."
"Congressman, the shooter in Dayton killed nine people in 40 seconds with a hundred-round drum magazine. It strikes the police involved as relevant."