The new Republican Representative Dan Bishop (R-NC) took North Carolina by a narrow margin, but he was already making the news talk show rounds the day after. The state held its special election after the previous GOP candidate was caught cheating in a big way. Here is Bishop with his head in a vice.
Ali Velshi is the host of MSNBC’s LIVE show and co-host of Velshi and Ruhle. The award-winning correspondent’s guest was the newest representative, and Velshi was eager to talk to him about his opinions on guns.
The result was seriously eye-opening. Bishop believed that assault-style firearms “couldn’t possibly” be the reason for the recent spate of mass shootings. Velshi started out asking about background checks:
‘I think we can all kind of agree that the gun show and private sale loopholes are something that we can tighten up.’
‘Since you mentioned guns specifically, the right to keep and bear arms, which is to set forth as an explicit constitutional right in the Bill of Rights must always be born front of mind. America’s always had the prevalence of guns throughout the country. But we haven’t always had the incidents of mass gun violence that we see occurring with horrific frequency now.’
Then, the new representative said Velshi’s idea about background checks was “a poor line of thinking:”
‘It couldn’t possibly be the guns if the guns have been here all along.’
That was the wrong thing to say. Velshi took Bishop on:
‘And back in the day we didn’t have these assault weapons available to regular people that allow you to commit a mass crime with accuracy and with intensity of impact of the bullet that a handgun has. Most of these mass killings aren’t committed with a handgun.’
Bishop was not moved by the anchor’s logic. Instead, he argued that background checks would be a “reflexive” attack on the U.S. Constitution:
‘It has to do with mental illness and whether that’s being appropriately treated. It has a great deal to do with how we make community among each other, what our social values are, and how they’re evolving and whether people end up being excluded from community as a result. And I think we have to tackle all of those issues in our dialogue rather than having a reflexive attack on the constitutional right that’s embedded in the Bill of Rights.’
Velshi was ready for him:
‘I’ve been having covered a lot of these for a lot of years. I don’t know that wanting tighter background checks is reflexive. We have seen not one, but many mass killings over the years. I’ve been at many of them myself. I’m a gun owner, sir. I hear you. I’m saying I don’t think it’s a reflexive sudden response to say let’s tighten up background checks.’
Check out the action in the video below:
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