Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-California) voiced her bewilderment toward reporters on Tuesday, who had asked her if she had any regrets about not bringing lawmakers back to Washington D.C. during the August recess to pass more gun legislation in the House.
“We did our job. The Senate was supposed to come back, why don’t you all get that straight?” Pelosi responded. “The Senate did not come back to pass the bill.I’m getting very angry about the silliness of these questions.”
She continued addressing the question, saying that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) bore responsibility for obstructing new gun rules.
“Lives are at stake. Senator McConnell is standing in the way. We passed our bill in February,” Pelosi said.
“Don’t ask me what we haven’t done. We have done it. And if you are annoyed with my impatience, it’s because people are dying because Senator McConnell hasn’t acted,” the speaker added.
McConnell, for his own part, has signaled he will continue to stall on gun bills until he’s told by President Donald Trump which ones he’d like to see pass. Only then would he allow consideration for a vote in his chamber, he said in a radio interview last week, according to CNN.
Pressed on congressional response on gun violence, Speaker Pelosi says, "Senator McConnell hasn't acted. Why don't you go ask him if he has any regrets for all the people who died because he hasn't acted?" https://t.co/HybFX2GM5S pic.twitter.com/v2DGQcRhb8
— ABC News (@ABC) September 10, 2019
“If the President is in favor of a number of things that he has discussed openly and publicly, and I know that if we pass it, it will become law, I’ll put it on the floor,” McConnell explained.
His opposition could hurt the Republican Party. A recent ABC News/Washington Post poll shows that most Americans back sensible gun laws, including banning of assault weapons.
Expanding background checks to every gun sale (closing the gun-show loophole, and requiring them in private sales) has the support of 89 percent of Americans, that poll found. An assault weapons ban, similar to one passed in the mid-1990s, has slimmer, yet still a majority, of support, with 56 percent backing the idea. And banning high-capacity magazine accessories is supported by 60 percent of Americans.
The issue is one that worries most of the country: 60 percent expressed concern that their communities could be the next place where a mass shooting could happen.
While the chances of being killed in a mass shooting are small, they are not impossible, and are indeed more likely than other possible ways to die, according to Business Insider. A person has a 1 in 11,125 chance of dying in a mass shooting, which are greater odds than dying in a heatwave, getting killed by a bus/train/streetcar, or getting hit by lightning.
Americans have a 1 in 315 chance of being killed due to an assault from a gun in general. That’s a greater chance of dying than riding in a car, drowning, choking on food, or dying in an airplane/boat incident.