In the wake of the horrific school violence in Newtown, Connecticut, the few prominent Democratic politicians who back the 2nd Amendment, like Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Sen. John Warner (D-VA), appear to be backtracking from their prior defense of gun rights.
Democratic Gov. Brian Schweitzer of Montana, a rumored 2014 US Senate or 2016 presidential candidate; however, is standing firm in his support of gun rights.
“I don’t want to sound like a terrorist here, but you give me 20 gallons of propane- I can do a lot of damage in a very short period of time,” said Schweitzer during Tuesday morning’s Voices of Montana statewide radio talk show. “If there are evil people they can use guns, or as we’ve seen in Russia, they can also use things like propane. You can use natural gas. Five gallons of gasoline and imagine what can happen.”
Schweitzer added that he continues to oppose efforts by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) to reinstate an assault weapons ban, and aimed his ire in the direction of video game manufacturers:
SCHWEITZER: “They plan to bring that legislation back, but that actually wouldn’t change anything thing that happened back there in Connecticut in terms of what gun was used and what types of guns could be used.”
“This is evil and it has everything to do with mental illness and look I’m gonna pick on somebody right now. You wanna pick on somebody? How about those video game manufacturers, where an entire generation are glued to a screen for 6 or 8 hours a day while they are poking buttons and blowing other people up and shooting them in the face.”
Click below to listen to audio of Gov. Schweitzer’s remarks on Tuesday’s Voices of Montana, and keep an eye on my podcast page for full audio from Tuesday’s show.
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While Schweitzer holds firm, Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin (WV)appears to have changed his tune, or is at least giving conflicting statements depending on which media outlet he is talking to at the time, as Breitbart.com reports.
When asked by Breitbart News, Manchin disagreed that his remarks on MSNBC show his stance on the second amendment have flipped. “I didn’t change my mind on anything. I think everything is open for discussion.” It should be noted that Manchin, also known for breaking campaign promises on tax hikes, may have a difficult time explaining his turnaround on guns to voters in his own state. West Virginia, a state President Obama lost in 2008 and 2012, has one of the highest rate of gun ownership in the country: 55 percent own guns.
Before abruptly concluding the interview with the female Breitbart.com reporter who tried to press Manchin further on his remarks, Manchin said, “No, honey, nothing. I’m not talking to you anymore I can tell where you’re going..”
And Manchin isn’t the only A-rated Democratic Senator to shift rhetoric on 2nd Amendment rights. Politico’s Playbook featured this from the New York Times:
–N.Y. Times A31, “Silent Since Shootings, N.R.A. Could Face Challenge to Political Power,” by Nicholas Confessore, Michael Cooper and Michael Luo : “Having already won their most important priority – Supreme Court recognition of an individual constitutional right to bear arms – gun rights groups are increasingly fighting on terrain where they have less support, including pushing bills at the state and local level to carry concealed weapons in virtually any public setting. … [S]ome opponents believe the N.R.A.’s ever-tighter relationships with Republican officials and an electorate that evermore comprises suburban and urban voters who are female and nonwhite, give it less leverage over Democrats, even in red states. On Monday, two pro-gun-rights Democrats, Senators Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Mark Warner of Virginia, said they would consider supporting new measures to limit guns. …
Video of Manchin’s remarks on MSNBC are below: