Gabriel Gomez on Gun Control
[VIDEO CLIP] MARKEY: My opponent opposes an assault weapon ban. My opponent opposes a ban on high capacity magazines that attach to those assault weapons that turn them into weapons of war.[END VIDEO]
Q: So that's his point. Yes, you may be for the expanded background check, but you are against the assault weapons ban, and the high capacity magazine ban.
GOMEZ: This is an example of Congressman Markey not knowing how to solve the problem. In order to need to solve the problem, we need to ban all weapons from the wrong people. That's what's going to make our communities, our schools and our kids safer. In order to do that, we have to pass the expanded background check and tie it to mental health.
In one of the evening's sharper exchanges Gomez said it was "beyond disgusting" that Markey raised the Newtown, Conn., school shooting in a television ad that faulted Gomez for not supporting a ban on high capacity magazine clips. "To think that you are the only political candidate to actually invoke the Newtown massacre for political gain is beyond disgusting," Gomez said.
Markey responded by saying, "Mr. Gomez thinks that when we talk about the differences between the two of us on very important issues, that somehow or other we are engaging in negative politics. We are not."
The discussion pivoted on gun control for much of the first 1/2-hour, with a lively exchange on the issue. "I want to go down to Washington to fight the NRA," Markey said.
"I oppose the NRA on expanded background checks," Gomez responded, saying we "need to fix this problem." Gomez reiterated his support for a bipartisan piece of legislation that would expand mandatory background checks for gun purchases. That legislation, sponsored by Senator Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania and Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, failed in the Senate earlier this year.
Markey argued that the bill is the minimum that ought to be done on gun control, noting it was supported by a West Virginian. He said a Senator from Massachusetts should support broader gun control measures in the age after the shooting at the Newtown, Conn. elementary school.
Winslow briefly dragged Gomez into a dispute by referencing a letter Gomez wrote to Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick seeking the interim Senate appointment, which has been Gomez's Achilles' heel. Gomez wrote that he supported Democratic President Barack Obama in 2008 and agreed with Obama on immigration and gun control. Gomez conceded during the debate that the letter "was worded poorly."
Gomez later said he only supports some of Obama's positions. Gomez responded that he supports closing the gun show loophole but not banning assault weapons. He acknowledged he could have worded the letter differently.
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