Manchin gives Democrats a reality check on gun control

News & Politics

Democratic lawmakers are calling for new gun control legislation in the wake of the racially motivated massacre in Buffalo, New York, last weekend, but once again Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) is standing in the way of the most fervent progressives.

President Joe Biden went to Buffalo on Tuesday and visited with the families of 10 people who were killed and three others wounded by a white supremacist gunman. In a speech, the president denounced the attack as an act of “domestic terrorism,” condemned white supremacy, and renewed calls for a federal ban on so-called “assault weapons.”

“There are certain things we can do. We can keep assault weapons off our streets. We’ve done it before. I did it when I passed the crime bill,” Biden said, referring to the 1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, which included a 10-year assault weapons ban.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), also speaking in Buffalo Tuesday, vowed that Democrats would “work towards finally ridding our streets of weapons of war.”

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But Manchin, speaking to reporters shortly before Biden spoke, gave his realistic assessment that in the 50-50 Senate, the only gun control legislation that has a chance of passing is a bipartisan compromise on background checks that previously failed. That bill, named for Manchin and his chief co-sponsor, Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), would expand federal background check requirements to all advertised commercial sales, including sales at gun shows and over the internet.

“I support the Manchin-Toomey, I’ve always done that,” Manchin told reporters, according to The Hill. “The Manchin-Toomey is the one. I think if you can’t get that one, then why try to do something just for basically voting for the sake of voting?”

While some Democrats want action on a universal background check bill that passed the House in March last year, the West Virginia moderate has previously said that bill goes too far because it would extend to private transactions, such as those between neighbors, hunting buddies, or even family. The Manchin-Toomey bill exempted those transactions.

“The best piece of legislation that we’ve ever had, that most people agreed on, was the Manchin-Toomey. We didn’t infringe on anyone’s rights privately,” Manchin said.

But if Manchin-Toomey was the bill “that most people agreed on,” that wouldn’t mean much — the bill failed in 2013, coming six votes short of the 60-vote threshold to overcome a filibuster at a time when a stronger Democratic majority held the Senate. Only two Republicans voted for it, Toomey and Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine).

It is far more unlikely that 10 Republicans would cross the aisle to vote for any sort of gun control bill this year, especially before the midterm elections in November.

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  1. I’ve completed a background check every time I’ve purchased a firearm, criminals don’t and never will. Reality isn’t just what you say it is.

    1. They think it is- after all, they think men can get pregnant and have abortions.
      It IS a mental disorder.

  2. Since when, exactly, do guns get up and shoot anyone without someone to help? Since when, exactly, di we become so stupid as to expect someone bent on murder to abide by the law anyway?

  3. Prosecute criminals for the crimes they commit, as the metal object connot do anything on its own. if a criminal kills someone they should face the death penalty for there crime!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. All & Terry. Perfect example of political dis-honesty, subterfuge, lies & more damn lies. NJ has a law that an additional 5 (FIVE) years be added to sentence of convicted person who used a gun during a crime. I challenge all to find this has ever been done. Plea bargaining reigns supreme. U can go back to sleep.

  4. The reality is, democrats are not dealing with reality, and communist just want to disarm America!

  5. It is just the same song and dance!!! everyone would turn in their guns but the criminals

  6. Why isn’t someone who drives over someone with a vehicle treated the same way. Ban all self-propelled vehicles!

    1. Didn’t see your post, and just said the exact same thing. The effin hypocrisy from the left, and bumbling Biden knows no bounds..

  7. I don’t remember the potato in chief condemning the black man that killed a bunch of old white folks and a kid in Waukesha. Don’t remember hearing the words domestic terrorism being thrown around, and certainly don’t remember him making an in person, tax payer funded visit to make empty promises and demand a ban on SUVs (which would be only slightly more ridiculous than his call to ban “assault weapons”).. Just once again feeding his hungry flock of leftist nutcases what they want to hear, and further fanning the already out of control flame that is racism in this country. This guy is such a bumbling, hypocritical piece of garbage, and if I didn’t hate him so much, I’d feel sorry for him. Every time he opens his mouth I cringe.. Dude has GOT to go.

    1. Well said, Doc. It’s almost as if black terrorists have a right to kill white people: BLM but WL don’t.

  8. Democrats still remain the enemy of lawful gun ownership and freedom. It is in their blood as the communists the Democratic party has evolved into.

    All they need is a few corrupt and gutless GOP members to succeed, as they have always accomplished.

  9. I remember one time when a gun killed a person. A shotgun propped in a corner of the bedroom fell and discharged during a fire in the home. The primer was not struck, the heat of the fire cooked off the round in the chamber.

  10. In theory that shooting in NY should never have happened with all Their silly little laws. 1 it proves the mental health system is completely broken. 2 (Hillary Said) never let a good crisis go to waste. What the democrats want isn’t about guns, it’s all about the CONTROL! I used to think they were well intentioned. I now know they want a socialist regime were they control everything.

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