On Saturday, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush told supporters in Las Vegas that Obama’s gun control proposals would not have stopped any of the attacks “that have taken place in the last couple of years.”
He said gun control is not even the solution. Rather, there should be a renewed focus on mental illness and treatment.
According to the LA Times, Bush responded to a question about the Second Amendment by saying:
All of these tragic instances that have taken place in the last couple of years are heartbreaking. They really are. [But] not a single one of them would have been stopped with any of the ideas proposed by Barack Obama. Not a single one of them.
One of Obama’s biggest proposals is the expansion of background checks to every gun sale in the country, be that sale retail or private. Yet the cold hard facts are that background checks do not stop public attackers, and Breitbart News has shown that the most prominent attackers of the last 15 years all passed background checks for their guns.
These include Dylann Roof (Charleston), Elton Simpson and Nadir Soofi (Garland), Jared and Amanda Miller (Las Vegas), Elliot Rodger (Santa Barabara), Ivan Lopez (Fort Hood 2014), Darion Marcus Aguilar (Maryland mall), Karl Halverson Pierson (Arapahoe High School), Paul Ciancia (LAX), Andrew John Engeldinger (Minneapolis), Aaron Alexis (DC Navy Yard), Tennis Melvin Maynard (West Virginia), James Holmes (Aurora theater), Jared Loughner (Tucson), Nidal Hasan (Fort Hood 2009), Jiverly Wong (Binghamton), Seung-Hui Cho (Virginia Tech), Naveed Haq (Seattle), and Mark Barton (Atlanta), among others.
Obama has also pushed for a ban on magazine capacity, which would limit magazines to 10 rounds or less. But Elliot Rodger showed the frailty of this inasmuch as he complied with California’s 10-round magazine restriction during his May 2014 Santa Barbara attack. He simply mitigated the effects of the ban on higher capacity mags by greatly increasing the number of 10-round magazines in his possession.
Bush said gun laws should remain a state issue. He then referenced gun laws in Florida where some sales have a check and some don’t. He also pointed out that he is the Governor who signed Florida’s Stand Your Ground legislation into law.
But going forward, Bush may need to explain his answer to a 1998 “Florida National Political Awareness Test,” on which he said he “[supported] an instant background check for all guns purchased at a gun show.”
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.