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Bill Bradley on Gun Control

2000 Democratic Primary Challenger for President


Money determines gun laws instead of child safety

Every day [handguns] kill twelve children in America. 72% of Americans favor mandatory licensing of handguns, but Congress seems to find any excuse not to do something about it-even going so far as to pass bills by day, then quietly kill them by night. On the face of it, this doesn’t make any sense-until you notice the fact that in 1998, the National Rifle Association gave nearly $2 million to various members of Congress, 83% going to Republican candidates.
Source: The Journey From Here, by Bill Bradley, p. 87 , Aug 15, 2000

Beating the NRA must come from concerted leadership

BRADLEY. We make a mistake when we take a tragic incident and we look at that one individual case [instead of] a much broader case. Everybody was struck by Columbine. Why? Because we saw our own kids, they looked like our kids, we thought. But 13 kids are killed every day in America with a gun and 800,000 kids took a gun to school last year. Now that is not going to change unless there’s concerted leadership from the national government that’s willing to marshal public opinion to overcome the vested interest, the special interest that’s embodied in the NRA.

GORE: I agree with that. I was a co-sponsor of the Brady Law. I cast the tie-breaking vote to close the so-called gun show loophole. The NRA has targeted me as a result. We have got to take them on strongly and pass new gun control legislation-not aimed at hunters and sportsmen, but at these handguns that are causing so much distress in our country.

Source: Democrat debate in Los Angeles , Mar 1, 2000

Tough gun laws & tough leadership to stop child tragedies

Q: Your comments on the shocking incident of the 6-year-old boy shooting a girl in a 1st-grade classroom?

BRADLEY: How many lives will have to be taken by gunfire, how many families will have to be marred for life? We need very tough gun legislation, registration and licensing of all handguns, gun dealers out of residential neighborhoods, trigger locks, background checks, but above all, what we need is a leader who’s committed to this every day he’s in office. Otherwise, you’ll never beat the NRA.

GORE: I feel so deeply for the family of this little girl who was killed. The boy [lived in] a flophouse, [with] guns laying around. We need child-safety trigger locks. We need to ban junk guns. We need to reinstate the 3-day waiting period. We need to also deal with drugs. That was part of this problem. We need more psychologists and guidance counselors in our schools and more teachers with smaller classes so they can keep track of these students and their family situation. And so much more.

Source: Democrat debate in Los Angeles , Mar 1, 2000

Gore was a conservative Congressman who voted with NRA

BRADLEY [to Gore]: I’ve offered the strongest gun control proposal of any presidential candidate in history. Gore was a conservative Congressman-he voted with the NRA.

GORE: The Clinton-Gore administration has passed the toughest gun control measures in the last 30 years. I cast the tie-breaking vote to close the gun show loophole.

BRADLEY: What you’ve seen is an elaborate “Gore Dance.” It is a dance to avoid facing up to your conservative record on guns. It is a dance that denies the fact that you do not support registration and licensing of all handguns, but you want to give the impression of that, so you say, “I’m for licensing of all mmmm-handguns.” What does that mean? It means, “I’m for licensing of all new handguns,” only new. Not the 65 million that are out there.

GORE: I support a complete ban on junk guns, assault weapons, and yes, I support photo license I.D.’s for the purchase of all new handguns when somebody goes down to the gun store.

Source: (X-ref to Gore) Democrat debate in Harlem, NYC , Feb 21, 2000

Register and license all handguns

Q: Can we limit the number of guns an individual can buy and allow only guns used for hunting?
A: The answer is yes, we can limit the number of guns that people buy. In fact I’ve offered the strongest gun control proposal of any presidential candidate in history. I want registration and licensing of all handguns, all handguns. I want to make sure that there are trigger locks on guns, no gun dealers in residential neighborhoods, that we have background checks at gun shows as well as gun dealers.
Source: Democrat debate in Harlem, NYC , Feb 21, 2000

Ban gun sales in residential neighborhoods

The topic for Bradley’s visit was gun violence; and he trumpeted his positions on gun control. “I have laid out the strongest gun control proposal of any candidate in the history of presidential races,” Bradley said. He went on to list a ban on all “Saturday night specials,” a requirement that all 65 million existing handguns in America be registered and licensed, and a ban on gun sales in residential neighborhoods, as the key pieces of his plan.
Source: Boston Herald, p. 6 , Feb 18, 2000

Register and license all handguns

Q: What would you do to stop violence in the schools? A: The first step is commonsense gun control. And by that I mean registration and licensing of all handguns in America. If we can do that for automobiles, we ought to be able to do that for handguns.
Source: Democrat Debate in Johnston Iowa , Jan 8, 2000

Register & license all 65 million handguns

BRADLEY [to Gore]: I have proposed registration & licensing of all 65 million handguns in America. President Clinton has said he is for that. We’re in the midst of this tremendous rash of gun violence in America.. Registration and licensing is what we do for automobiles. Why can’t we do it for handguns in America and why don’t you support it?

GORE: I do support licensing of the purchase of all new handguns. The president said, yeah, he supports that idea. But it doesn’t have a prayer of ever becoming law. It’s much more sensible to try to get the maximum gun control that we possibly can. We have to find a way to make our political system work, taking into account the fact that there are so many people who are going to fight tooth and nail against measures [like those Bradley proposes].

BRADLEY: [You’re saying], essentially, that it’s too difficult to do. The essence of leadership is taking something that is difficult and making it possible [by] engaging the American people.

Source: (Cross-ref. to Gore) Democratic Debate in Durham, NH , Jan 5, 2000

Gun control leads to safe schools

There’s another element [in the discussion of educational improvement], and it is violence. And that’s why mandatory licensing and registration of handguns is the way you make those schools safer.
Source: Town Hall Meeting, Nashua NH , Dec 18, 1999

Stand up to the NRA

“I think it’s about time somebody stood up to the NRA,” said Bradley, referring to the National Rifle Association and implying the Clinton-Gore administration had not. At another point, Bradley said, “What we need is a little plain speaking about where we are in the world today.”
Source: Ann Scales, Boston Globe, p. A16 , Sep 26, 1999

Ban Saturday Night Specials; plus other “common-sense”

I think that we’re at the time in our country where common-sense gun control can be widely accepted. It can be accepted by gun owners, by sportsmen, by hunters. I think it’ll be accepted by parents who are certainly worried about children getting access to guns. And I think that this is common sense. I would ban Saturday Night Specials. Ever since I saw Robert Kennedy on the floor of the Ambassador Hotel in 1968, I always thought that the president ought to ban Saturday Night Specials.
Source: NBC’s “Meet the Press” , Aug 1, 1999

For registration & licensing; against freely re-selling

I would also require registration and licensing, so you are able to track where the gun goes. For example, if you have a fly-by-night dealer, and the fly-by-night dealer sells it to someone else, it’s like a car, you’ve got to register that or you’re in violation of the law. When you’re a gun dealer and you sell a gun to somebody who’s going to pass it on to somebody else, that’s only a misdemeanor. I think it should be a felony, because that’s the way guns get in the hands of children.
Source: NBC’s “Meet the Press” , Aug 1, 1999

Ban inexpensive “junk” handguns

Bradley called for a ban on “junk” handguns, the inexpensive, cheaply made weapons most often linked to crime. “These can explode in a user’s hand,” Bradley said. “They are dangerous.” The stance seemed a slight retreat from reports last month that Bradley was considering pushing a ban on the sale of all handguns. His aides say the ban on all handgun sales is a long-range goal. Bradley said he would support a ban on both the possession and sale of junk guns, also known as Saturday night specials.
Source: CNN AllPolitics “Mixed views” , Jun 18, 1999

Register guns; limit buyers to one per month

Bradley’s agenda on guns includes a one-per-month limit on handgun purchases, banning anyone convicted of domestic violence from owning a gun, restricting firearms dealers to commercial areas, bumping up the cost of licenses for gun dealers, requiring a registration process for handguns similar to auto registration, and requiring background checks on buyers at gun shows.
Source: CNN AllPolitics “Mixed views” , Jun 18, 1999

Other candidates on Gun Control: Bill Bradley on other issues:
Former Presidents:
George W. Bush (R,2001-2009)
Bill Clinton (D,1993-2001)
George Bush Sr. (R,1989-1993)
Ronald Reagan (R,1981-1989)
Jimmy Carter (D,1977-1981)
Gerald Ford (R,1974-1977)
Richard Nixon (R,1969-1974)
Lyndon Johnson (D,1963-1969)
John F. Kennedy (D,1961-1963)
Dwight Eisenhower (R,1953-1961)
Harry_S_TrumanHarry S Truman(D,1945-1953)

Former Contenders:
V.P.Al Gore
Pat Buchanan
V.P.Dick Cheney
Sen.Bob Dole
Ralph Nader
Gov.Sarah Palin

Political Thinkers:
Noam Chomsky
Milton Friedman
Arianna Huffington
Rush Limbaugh
Tea Party
Ayn Rand
Secy.Robert Reich
Donald Trump
Gov.Jesse Ventura
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Page last updated: Jul 03, 2014