Everyone Attacked Bernie Over Gun Control — From The Left

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images.
If you tuned into the first Democratic presidential debate a few minutes after it started, you would have seen Sen. Bernie Sanders arguing with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley about guns. America just heard more about guns and gun violence in that time period than during the entire 2012 campaign. Tonight, things got heated — and Sanders took most of that heat.

Clinton wasted no time going after Sanders for his conservative record on guns. When Anderson Cooper asked Clinton if she thought the Vermont Senator is tough enough on guns, she said, "No, not at all. We have to look at the fact that we lose 90 people a day from gun violence. This has gone on too long, and it's time the entire country stood up against the NRA."

Sanders voted against the Brady bill five times, and he supported a bill that protects gun dealers that sell illegal weapons from lawsuits. He also insisted that his position makes sense because he's from a rural state, and finding consensus between people from different backgrounds is the only solution to the problems of gun violence.

"We can raise our voices," Sanders said. "But I come from a rural state, and the views on gun control in rural states are different than in urban states — whether we like it or not. Our job is to bring people together around strong common sense gun legislation."

O'Malley shot back, "Have you ever been to the Eastern Shore? Have you ever been to Western Maryland? We were able to pass this, and still respect the hunting traditions of people who live in our rural areas. We did it by leading with principle — not by pandering to the NRA and backing down."

"Check it out," Sanders said. "If you think that we can simply go forward and pass something tomorrow without bringing people together, you are mistaken."
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