Sen. Cruz on Grassley-Cruz Legislation: We Could Pass These Reforms Right Now and Make Our Country Safer
Highlights efforts to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous individuals, stop mass shootings
September 11, 2019
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Tuesday met with Alyssa Milano, Fred Guttenberg, and Ben Jackson to discuss the Second Amendment and actions Congress can take to stop mass shootings and protect lives, including bipartisan legislation Sen. Cruz and Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) reintroduced earlier this year.
As Sen. Cruz said during the meeting:
"If we can start from what I think should be a shared goal which is act to stop gun violence and stop mass murders like this in the future, then I think we can have a reasonable conversation about what policies are most likely to produce that."
"My position is absolutely we need to act. [...] I have offered solutions, including Grassley-Cruz, which would keep guns out of the hands of felons and dangerous individuals, and stop mass shootings. We could pass these reforms right now and make our country safer."
Explaining the need for Congress to focus on what works, Sen. Cruz added:
"What I think is effective, is focusing on the bad guys. Is focusing on felons and fugitives, and those with serious mental illnesses that are a danger to themselves or to others. And I think we need to focus the laws, our efforts to keep firearms out of their hands, our efforts to if they're breaking the law to prosecute them, we need to focus on the bad guys. What I don't think is effective, and at least in Washington [...] In Congress where I serve, often the debates focus on law abiding citizens and restricting their rights. I think that is not effective at stopping crime."
Specifically discussing the legislation he has continued to champion with Sen. Grassley, commonly known as Grassley-Cruz, he said:
"We need to pass Grassley-Cruz. What it [does] is focused on strengthening background checks. I want background checks to be stronger and more effective, and keep weapons out of the hands of violent felons and fugitives, and people with dangerous mental illness."
Here is what news outlets are saying regarding their discussion:
Breitbart: Ted Cruz Fact Checks Alyssa Milano During Gun Control Debate
"The Texas senator added, ‘the machine gun has been functionally illegal for 80 years, you and I can't purchase a machine gun.' Sen. Cruz also fact checked the notion that an assault weapon ban would help reduce gun violence, noting that when America had an assault weapons ban, the ban did not have a ‘material' impact on gun violence. ‘If we can agree the objective is to keep people safe,' then Congress should push for Grassley-Cruz, Sen. Cruz charged."
KXAS: (VIDEO) Sen. Cruz and Alyssa Milano Meet to Discuss Gun Control
"‘I try to engage in issues without going into personal and nasty attacks, without going into the gutter, without giving in to the viciousness of the moment right now, and both sides are guilty of that.' Sen. Cruz said. ‘Cruz brought up a 2013 bill he wrote with Iowa Republican Senator Chuck Grassley. He said it would have prevented the 2017 mass shooting at a church in Sutherland Springs."
Yahoo News: Alyssa Milano and Ted Cruz come together for gun control debate
"‘I have been with Texas families, crying, grieving over their children, over their parents. It is horrific; it is wrong. And it's screwed up. We need to do more to stop this," said Cruz. [...] Cruz said, ‘What I think is effective is focusing on the bad guys, is focusing on felons, and fugitives, and those with serious mental illnesses that are a danger to themselves or others.' But, unlike Milano, Cruz is not in favor of mandatory buybacks for assault weapons like the AR15 or universal background checks. [...] ‘I want to make sure people's right to self-defense is protected; because the up to three million people a year protecting their home, I want to protect their lives to,' added Cruz."
KTBC: (VIDEO) Sen Cruz and Alyssa Milano Meet to Discuss Gun Control
"What I think is effective is focusing on the bad guys -- focusing on felons and fugitives and those with serious mental illness.' Cruz touted the bill he re-introduced with senator chuck Grassley last spring that would prosecute felons and fugitives who try to get guns, among other things. ‘The Odessa shooter initially tried to buy a firearm from a licensed dealer, he was denied, he was denied because he had been committed, adjudicated, to have mental illness [...] what I don't know is if he lied on his form. ‘If he did lie on his form, under Grassley-Cruz, which I'm pushing us to pass, we would've prosecuted him and we could've prevented Odessa.'"
Dallas Morning News: Sen. Ted Cruz and actress Alyssa Milano have a 'civil' conversation about gun rights
"Cruz spent much of the conversation pushing a 2013 bill he wrote with Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley. He said it would have prevented the 2017 mass shooting at a church in Sutherland Springs, near San Antonio, had it not been blocked in 2013. The bill would provide resources to prosecute those who break gun laws and those who fail background checks, while requiring government entities to accurately submit information to the national background check database. ‘We should strengthen background checks,' Cruz said, indicating that his bill was the way to do that."
The full video of the meeting may be viewed here.