On July 24, Gabby Giffords’s husband Mark Kelly was questioned about the Lafayette theater attack, and after admitting all the facts were not yet known, he pushed for background checks and other gun controls.
To justify the gun control push, Kelly floated the idea that alleged gunman John Russell Houser may have bought his handgun at a gun show where he could have avoided a background check.
Kelly’s exact words: “Maybe he went to a gun show where you don’t need to get a background check. So, some clear things we can do—and I think we would all agree that keeping guns, dangerous firearms, out of the hands of criminals is a good idea.” He then said we are “paralyzed” from closing this so-called loophole because of the pressure put on Washington DC by “special interests.”
Kelly then referenced the so-called “easy access” our current gun laws “provide to felons and criminals” and said this “is something that really shouldn’t exist.” He added, “A simple background check can prevent not every one of these things from happening, but it can prevent some criminals who will commit crimes with these weapons from getting them.”
PBS’s Judy Woodruff then pointed out that some alleged gunmen—like Dylann Roof—did pass a background check for the gun they used to commit a heinous crime. Kelly responded by pointing out that “there are holes in that system,” then added, “One big hole is the 40 percent of gun sales that are done without a background check that you can drive a truck through.”
As the interview with Kelly was ending, Woodruff announced that Houser passed a background check for the handgun he allegedly used to commit his crime. He did not go to a gun show, nor is he in Mark Kelly’s “40 percent.”
But he did take his gun into a gun-free zone and open fire on fellow citizens who were defenseless.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.