Dan Gilmore / June 24, 2015

Here Come the Gun Control Crusaders After Charleston

Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Pat Toomey (R-PA) are at it again. After the Sandy Hook massacre, Toomey — a gun-owning, NRA A-rated politician — jumped on Barack Obama’s bandwagon and introduced legislation that would toughen the nation’s background check legislation. The bill was defeated 54-46 in 2013, but Manchin and Toomey told The Washington Post Tuesday night that they would like to revive the bill in response to the massacre in Charleston. Nothing like standing on the caskets of victims to advance a few extra yards in the political game. Toomey, when he appeared on MSNBC Wednesday morning, admitted the bill is mostly a crapshoot. “Honestly, I don’t want to build up any false expectations,” he said, “I’m not aware that we have the votes to do what Sen. Manchin and I attempted. Is it possible that some portion of that, some subset of what we focused on is possible? Honestly, probably not likely.” Still, it shows the tenacity of the forces driving gun control. Every time a front page blares that a crime was committed with a gun, there will be another call for gun restrictions. And the politicians will blow the dust off their tired gun control bills in hopes that maybe this atrocity will have the emotional clout to carry it through.

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