Martin Bashir | January 24, 2013
>> joined by hogan gidley, former communications director on the rick santorum presidential campaign, msnbc corrector maria teresa kumar, and msnbc contributor joy reid, who is the managing editor of thegrio.com. joy, it's a big day on capitol hill today. senator dianne feinstein introduces her bill to ban some military-style assault weapons . i think 157 types. now, this is the same bill that gun lobbyist wayne lapierre referred to as a phony piece of legislation, one that's built entirely on lies, but you tell me, is there a bigger lie in the world than the one that guns don't kill people?
>> yeah, exactly. well, you know what? the problem is that unfortunately increasing in this country, people with guns kill people because there's a sort of formulation that guns don't kill people assumes guns are laying around on the ground or the carpet. the problem is in this country we have the highest rate of gun deaths in the world and in the parts of the country that listen most to the nra , namely the american south , we have the highest rate of gun deaths in the country. so there's a direct correlation between more guns, loser gun laws , and more deaths. the nra doesn't care about that because, of course, all they care about is selling more product. they represent the product sellers which is why they oppose anything that would interrupt sales.
>> right. maria, teresa, mr. lapierre responded to the subject of background checks .
>> standing in line and filling out a bunch of bureaucratic paperwork just so a grandfather can give a grandson a christmas gift.
>> so, maria teresa , we all accept a grandfather has a right to give his grandson certain types of guns as a gift if he wishes, but what about the same right the child has to going to school without being hit by 11 bulletses from a military-style assault weapon . i guess that's not a absolute right in the same way, is it?
>> i think he's being disingenuous with his membership. 74% of members believe in criminal background checks . recognizing that guns should not be falling into the hands of criminals and people who are mentally ill .
>> mr. lapierre says the only intention behind any legislation is to either tax the weapon or take it. that's what he says.
>> well, that's what he says, but that's because what he's trying to do is spin his constituency, his membership, into believing false positives. 74% of nra members believe there should be background checks just like we expect everybody that is behind the wheel of a car to have a driver's license and make sure they're tested and they're driving responsibly. the same thing should be happening with whether or not you're a gun owner. i think that's perfectly responsible.
>> and you're making perfect sense, maria teresa . hogan, the vice president spoke with guns on the internet. he said something interesting about the ban on assault weapons versus the ban on high capacity ammunition magazines. take a listen.
>> i'm much less concerned, quite frankly , about what you call an assault weapon than i am about magazines and the number of rounds that can be held in a magazine.
>> hogan, given the resistance to the idea of an assault weapons ban , do you think the chances are better for passing something around the issue of high capacity ammunition magazines?
>> i don't actually. i think the political reality here is if the president wants to be big and bad about this, he needs to take it through the senate and i think in the first intelligent move boehner has made in a while he punted to senate and said when the senate passes something, i will be happy to have that conversation. it put it back on the senate's shoulders. biden is talking about magazines. the question continues to be posed do we really need 30 bullets? i understand the question and i understand the political ramifications of the question, but my point is do we need a car to go 100 miles an hour? the speed limit is only 70. i don't think the government needs to be legislating necessarily the things we need and don't need.
>> that's a slightly strange analogy because i can't recall a car being used in the way that guns are to murder people in movie theaters , in schools. that's an unfair and unreasonable analogy, isn't it?
>> that's true, but, look, cars kill more people a year than guns and i'll make it better for you, martin. i don't necessarily know that you need to go to barney's to buy another suit but i don't think the government should tell you you shouldn't buy one. the point is --
>> again, hogan, i don't understand because me buying a suit doesn't actually result in the murder of 20 children in an elementary school .
>> no, it doesn't, i agree with you 100%. but my point is the government intrusion into what we need and what we don't need. let's talk about what we agree on and i think the president was right on a few things. oun versal background checks if the fra doesn't get on board with that we're going to be in big trouble for a long time. i think the president outlined very clearly some armed guards in school might be necessary. that's something we should talk about. the mental instability of people and their records being shared so they don't get those types of weapons. look, if the nra would come out and say, listen, it's important to us to have responsible gun ownership . it is clear some people aren't responsible. we want to help this country and protect our citizenry by making sure irresponsible people don't get guns, it would go miles to solve this pr problem they have right now.
>> that's the hope all of us have, but unfortunately, as yet, we did not hear that.
>> i think hogan gidley is one of the most republican voices in the republican party and thank god for him, but the reality is you also don't need to buy a ladder but there are currently more federal regulations about the manufacture and sales of ladders than there are of guns. one of the things senator dianne feinstein said when she made her announcement this morning was that when the 1993 assault weapons ban passed, it has never been challenged, was never taken to the supreme court and overturned nor was the 1968 gun control act nor wases ban on machine guns which still stands to this day. if then ra believed this was unconstitutional, they would challenge them. never challenged a single regulation on guns.
>> real quickly, thank you, joy ab for the compliment but i'm at the rnc winter meetings . i can't go back over there right now with you giving me compliments on the air. how am i going to talk to my people over there?
>> i feel sorry for you hogan. the cause of gun violence remains a complex issue but here is representative james langford, republican of oklahoma, and his theory of causation. have a listen.
>> we overmedicate kids. quite frankly , some of the overmedication of those kids is because welfare moms want to get additional benefits and if they can put them ons si through maintenance drugs they can put them on social security disability and get a separate check. that is wrong on every single level.
>> how long will it be before these guys blame welfare recipients for the outbreak of flu or hurricane sandy?
>> i mean, shame on him is what i say. because more than anything what he said is absolutely right in the sense there's disproportionate effects of gun violence in inner cities and across the border. if you want to go into communities that recognize the importance of having some sort of gun violence prevention, tough talk to those constituencies. otherwise, you're basically working out of -- without knowing exactly the repercussions that's happening in these communities. but let's talk a little bit about what's happening along the border, and the republican party 's need and want to expand with the latino community as a voting bloc . along the border close to nine out of ten latinos regardless if they're republican or democrat believe we should have some sort of gun control legislation and that we need it quickly. why? because they're suffering the repercussions of right now anybody walking into -- walking in, buying a gun, not necessarily from a dealer but from a pift owner, and having no repercussions or no trail of where that gun went to. it's disgraceful that someone would blame someone that is on welfare as the result of the violence we're incurring right now.
>> your reaction?
>> the reality is that in communities where there are precious few welfare people and people on welfare, young men with easy access to military assault weapons are going to movie theaters and schools and mowing down women and children . so you know what? the gun problem is universal irrespective of his opinion on the poor.
>> thank you very much. i'm very grateful to all of you.