Tags: Las Vegas Shooting | tom cole | lawmakers | bump stock | guidelines

Rep. Cole: Lawmakers Should Look at Bump Stock Guidelines

(MSNBC's "Morning Joe")

By    |   Wednesday, 04 October 2017 10:30 AM

Rep. Tom Cole said Wednesday he knows many people who have gun collections that could rival that of Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock, but he did agree that a look should be taken at bump stocks, an inexpensive equipment that can make a semi-automatic firearm perform as an automatic weapon.

"I think there's no question we ought to look into that," the Oklahoma Republican told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program, adding that he was not aware of the gadgets. "When I saw the clips and heard the fire, I just assumed he had an automatic weapon. I did not know that there was technology capable that cheaply of transforming a semi-automatic into an automatic weapon. Yeah, I don't think there's any question we ought to look at that."

Following Sunday's horrific shooting, it was discovered that Paddock had two of the bump stocks as part of the arsenal of weapons he'd taken to his room at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino, from where he unleashed hundreds of rounds of gunfire on a crowd of concertgoers.

"The bump stock issue is something we should look at," Cole added. "People that know weapons better than I do tell me there are relatively simple things you could do yourself they wouldn't have the same effect, but certainly would be horrific. This is something we need to look at."

Paddock, meanwhile, did not show any of the signs that ordinarily would be seen in terms of a disturbed personality, said Cole.

"There doesn't seem to have been personal circumstances that drove him over the edge, and, you know, it is an act of unspeakable evil," said Cole. "It's not one that I've heard any convincing explanation as to how it happened or much in the way of what we could do to stop it."

Cole also said he was not alarmed that Paddock had numerous weapons in his hotel room and that investigators have reported the gunman had 49 weapons overall.

"I have friends that have that many weapons," said Cole. "That's not uncommon in my part of the country. I mean, I literally could tick off ten names right now of people that ... they're collectors. They're sportsmen. This is something they do. They're not a threat to anybody, quite the opposite. They're some of the most solid citizens in my state. So, that doesn't surprise me."

Cole also insisted he's "fierce" about protecting Americans' Second Amendment rights.

"Most of the people that own these weapons, like 99.99 percent, aren't a threat to anybody," said Cole. "So, to me, I'm from a state where we lost three times as many people by a guy using fertilizer and a truck. Can you turn almost anything into a weapon of mass destruction if the evil of intent is there to do it? That doesn't mean we shouldn't minimize this. We must. I can't give you a quick, easy answer."

He said he also does not agree that bans are needed against semi-automatic rifles.

"There's millions of them in circulation," said Cole. "They're used appropriately. They're not dangerous."

And when it was pointed out to him that such weapons have proven dangerous, he retorted that "so are trucks driving into crowds."

"I don't see that as the obvious answer," Cole said of a ban. "We have 300 million guns in circulation legally now. Are you going to go back and reclaim them all? I think there's not an easy decisive fix here and people that suggest there is are not very persuasive in that regard."

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Rep. Tom Cole said Wednesday he knows many people who have gun collections that could rival that of Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock, but he did agree that a look should be taken at bump stocks, an inexpensive equipment that can make a semi-automatic firearm perform as an...
tom cole, lawmakers, bump stock, guidelines
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2017-30-04
Wednesday, 04 October 2017 10:30 AM
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