WASHINGTON—Government officials voiced their positions on what should or should not be done regarding gun control in the wake of the Orlando shooting.
A filibuster held by Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut ended Thursday morning after over 14 hours on the floor.
Sen. Murphy’s mission was to sway the Republicans to allow for votes on a couple of gun control measures. He announced in a tweet at 12:53 Thursday morning that he completed his mission.
President Barack Obama said Monday after the attack on Pulse Nightclub Sunday the AR-15 should be banned, according to White House press secretary Josh Earnest.
‘These assault weapons are weapons of war and they have no place in the hands of a legitimate hunter or much more likely is that a weapon of war is going to end up in the hands of someone like this who will be able to carry out a much more violent act because they are using a weapon that was intended not for the streets of Orlando but for a battlefield,” said Earnest to White House correspondents Monday.
Congressman Bennie Thompson (D-MS) stated that not enough is being done to prevent the next mass shooting.
“What I do object to is the House not acting on measures that could prevent the next mass shooting,” said Thompson. “The ‘No Fly, No Buy’ Act, a bipartisan measure, introduced by my Republican colleague from the Committee on Homeland Security Peter King (would) allow the FBI to prohibit a person on the terrorist watchlist from purchasing a firearm.
“Analysis issued this week by the Government Accountability Office underscores the need for action. It found that 90 percent of the people on the terrorist watchlist who attempted to legally purchase firearms were successful,” he added.
That success was seen in the case of Omar Mateen, the man who admitted to the Pulse Nightclub shooting before being killed by police after the attack. Mississippi Office of Homeland Security Director Rusty Barnes explained the Federal Bureau of Investigation had interviewed Mateen before but was not deemed a threat.
“The FBI is the best in the world,” said Barnes. “It isn’t fair to point fingers at the FBI in this attack, since we don’t know when the subject was radicalized.”
Barnes said the Pulse Nightclub incident is being unfairly politicized.
“This is not a gun issue,” said Barnes. “This is an act of terrorism, and this is what we should focus on. Our young people in this country are being radicalized. There are over 200,000 pro-ISIS tweet a day, and over 1,700 pro-ISIS media products put out just this year nationwide–including here in Mississippi.”
Larry Pratt, Executive Director of Gun Owners of America, said that politicians that have pushed for the ban of AR-15s, like Hillary Clinton, need to practice what they preach.
“We need to challenge her, and others like her,” said Pratt. “Mrs. Clinton, lead by example. Tell your Secret Service to lay their guns down.”
Pratt added that any gun ban would only keep law-abiding citizens from getting guns, not those set to do harm.