During a Friday interview on CNN, Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) warned 2020 presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke about the dangerous road he's going down when he calls for a ban on all semi-automatic AR-15s. Specifically, Coons is afraid O'Rourke's words will be used against the Democratic Party for years to come.
“I frankly think that that clip will be played for years at Second Amendment rallies with organizations that try to scare people by saying that Democrats are coming for your guns,” he told hot Poppy Harlow. “I don’t think having our presidential candidates, like Congressman O’Rourke did, say that we’re going to try to take people’s guns against their will is a wise policy or political move."
"I don't think a majority of the Senate or the country is going to embrace mandatory buybacks. We need to focus on what we can get done," Coons said.
Coons has partnered with colleague Pat Toomey (R-PA) to reintroduce the NICS Denial Notification Act. If passed, the bill would require federal authorities to alert local law enforcement agencies about a prohibited possessor attempting to purchase a firearm.
Toomey took to Twitter to say he agrees with Coons' assessment of the situation:
I agree with @ChrisCoons. This is an awful and extreme idea. Thankfully, there’s not enough support in Congress to do it. But this rhetoric undermines and hurts bipartisan efforts to actually make progress on commonsense gun safety efforts, like expanding background checks. https://t.co/lRmy8SHc47— Senator Pat Toomey (@SenToomey) September 13, 2019
Beto, however, hit back at Coons for his criticism:
Much respect to Sen. Coons for leading the fight on background checks. But the time for letting status quo politics determine how far we can go is over. If we agree that having millions of weapons of war on the streets is a bad idea, we have to do something about it. https://t.co/xf8tdKrMBJ— Beto O'Rourke (@BetoORourke) September 13, 2019
Coons gets it. Gun owners are protective of our Second Amendment rights. We want to make sure our right is sacred. When there are people, like Beto, running for office who explicitly say, "We're coming for your guns," Democrats no longer have anything to grasp. They can no longer use the talking point, "No one is trying to take your guns away."
Beto is confirming what gun owners always knew to be true: our suspicions were right. We can read through the lines and we know what you're going to try to do. They just have an outspoken poster child giving away their so-called "secrets" and "strategy."