WATCH: VA Democrat Gun Grabber Can’t Define ‘Assault Weapon’

Democratic Delegate Mark Levine of Alexandria. Levine sent out an email to his newsletter subscribers that accuses Republicans of allowing the massacre of children. GOP leaders struck back by voting down one of Levine's bills. CREDIT AP PHOTO / STEVE HELBER

Virginia Delegate Mark Levine (D) is pushing a ban on “assault weapons,” but cannot define what such a weapon actually is.

Levine’s legislation, House Bill 961, would ban “assault weapons,” but allow those who currently own them to keep them as long as they get a license to do so. HB 961 makes clear the licensing process would be used to create a database of “assault weapon” owners so the government knows the physical location of the guns and gun owners.

But when a constituent asked Levine to define “assault weapon,” the Democrat delegate struggled. He talked about shotguns and hunting rifles, explaining how deadly shotguns can be and that hunters eject spent shells from their rifles by pulling back a bolt.

He did not mention that AR-15s and AR-10s, semiautomatic rifles rather than bolt action, are wildly popular options for hunters. Levine also overlooked ATF Associate Deputy Director Ronald Turk’s 2017 contention that AR-platform and AK-style rifles “are now standard for hunting activities.”

Instead, Levine stressed that one can differentiate between an “assault weapon” and other types of firearms based on how an “assault weapon” is held. He also suggested the presence of a “pistol grip” or a “flash suppressor” or “a silencer” also betray the fact that a firearm is an “assault weapon.”

When describing what a “silencer” does, Levine noted that the May 31, 2019, Virginia Beach attacker used one. He did not mention that the Virginia Beach attacker used handguns in his attack.

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at Sign up to get Down Range at


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.