President Obama said “at some point, we as a country will have to reckon with the fact that this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries.”
Hillary Clinton asked of gun control in the wake of the Charleston church massacre, “How many people do we need to see cut down before we act?”
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said “while we have made significant progress in advancing civil rights in this country, we are far from eradicating racism.”
The former Maryland governor who’s competing against Clinton and Sanders for the 2016 Democratic Party nomination is just “pissed.”
“I’m pissed,” O’Malley said in an email to supporters today. “I’m pissed that after an unthinkable tragedy like the one in South Carolina yesterday, instead of jumping to act, we sit back and wait for the appropriate moment to say what we’re all thinking: that this is not the America we want to be living in.”
“I’m pissed that we’re actually asking ourselves the horrific question of, what will it take? How many senseless acts of violence in our streets or tragedies in our communities will it take to get our nation to stop caving to special interests like the NRA when people are dying?” he continued.
“I’m pissed that after working hard in the state of Maryland to pass real gun control—laws that banned high-magazine weapons, increased licensing standards, and required fingerprinting for handgun purchasers—Congress continues to drop the ball. It’s time we called this what it is: a national crisis.”
O’Malley touted his “F” rating from the NRA, saying he “never backed down” to the gun lobby group.
“So now, I’m doubling down, and I need your help. What we did in Maryland should be the first step of what we do as a nation. The NRA is already blaming the victims of yesterday’s shooting for their own deaths, saying they too should have been armed. Let’s put an end to this madness and finally stand up to them,” he said.
The reference is to NRA board member Charles Cotton, who wrote on an online forum of victim and pastor state Sen. Clementa Pinckney: “Eight of his church members, who might be alive if he had expressly allowed members to carry handguns in church, are dead. Innocent people died because of his political position on the issue.”
O’Malley advocated a national assault weapons ban, stricter background checks, and fingerprint requirements “to reduce straw buying.”
“Not one of the GOP presidential candidates comes even close to being right on this issue—and some actually believe that things like background checks are excessive, or that high-capacity magazines are a basic right,” O’Malley wrote with a link to his campaign website. “Well, I believe we all have a basic right to safe schools, safe places to worship, and safe streets.”