Tags: Mass Shootings | jim himes | gun laws | congress | nra

Rep. Himes: Gun Laws Stand No Chance Because of NRA

Image: Rep. Himes: Gun Laws Stand No Chance Because of NRA
(Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 15 Feb 2018 01:55 PM

No gun safety laws in Congress stand even a "2 percent" chance of coming to the House Floor because of the of the gun lobby and the right-wing politicians blocking them, Rep. Jim Himes said Thursday in response to the shootings that claimed 17 lives at a Florida high school on Wednesday.

"There is not a single piece of gun safety legislation that's anywhere in Congress that stands even a 2 percent chance of coming to the floor of the House of Representatives, even things supported by 90 percent of the American public like universal background checks," the Connecticut Democrat told MSNBC's "Morning Joe." 

"It's not going anywhere because the gun lobby and because the right wing — this is a religious matter for them — has basically said if you bring it up here in a meaningful way, your career will be over," he also said.

Himes represents the congressional district just over the line from Newtown, where just over five years ago children and teachers were murdered in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, and said Thursday that school shootings are happening because of the refusal to touch gun laws.

"The NRA [National Rifle Association] and the right wing in this country have decided that standing up on an absolute basis, and by absolute what I mean is you can't touch a single word of our gun safety laws, they have made it a purity test," said Himes.

They also have a tool that works "unbelievably well to dissipate the rage and anger" that happens after a mass shooting takes place.

"After Las Vegas, we had a one-week conversation about bump stocks, which nobody had ever heard of, and then that dissipates," said Himes. "Why? Because bump stocks are only used in a tiny percentage of killings. Most gun violence is suicide, so let's talk about suicides and mental health, but don't look over here where there's a universal background check bill languishing."

However, he added, "no one around here has the courage to say 'wait a minute, no other country, not another country on the the planet, has this problem.' Let's think about a solution that involves lots of things and that involves for the first time, some courage to save these lives we see being lost every two days."

Himes said he does not expect that Congress will lead on the issue.

"The NRA has become so powerful around here that, again, Congress will not lead," said Himes. "The way this is going to change is when the rage and the fear and the anger finally translate into a demand in places like Florida. . . 

"Remember, in our own state of Connecticut after Sandy Hook, the state passed universal background check, passed a package of gun safety measures. This is an issue where until the American people in places like Florida, because Florida is going backwards on this stuff with things like stand your ground laws."

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Rep. Jim Himes said Thursday no gun safety laws in Congress stand even a "2 percent" chance of coming to the House Floor because of the of the gun lobby and the right-wing politicians blocking them.
jim himes, gun laws, congress, nra
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2018-55-15
Thursday, 15 Feb 2018 01:55 PM
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