Transcript: Press briefing remarks by Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) on the proposed gun background check amendment

Transcript of press briefing remarks by Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) on a proposed amendment to strengthen background checks on gun purchases on April 10, 2013:

Let me just say good morning to all of you and I’m very, very proud to be here with my good friend, Pat Toomey, from my sister state of Pennsylvania and West Virginia – we’re side by side and we come from states that have deep-rooted cultures, as you know, and we believe very strongly in that.

I also want to give special thanks to two people who aren’t here today, who’ve been invaluable to this process and have worked from the beginning trying to find common ground and that is Sen. Chuck Schumer, my good friend, and my dear friend, Mark Kirk. Mark has been with me from the beginning and has never left. And Chuck and his staff and all of them have worked so hard… I also want to thank Tom Coburn. Tom has been invaluable to the process – also coming from the culture we come from and has great input all the way through this process.

I want to make it clear from the start that this is a start and it’s not the end of our work. We still have a lot to do.

We have an agreement – Pat and I have an agreement with Sen. Kirk and Sen. Schumer. We have an agreement on an amendment to prevent criminals and the mentally ill and insane from getting firearms and harming people. That’s extremely important for all of us.

Also, we agree that we need a commission on mass violence. This commission is going to be made up of people with expertise – people who have expertise in guns, people who have expertise in mental illness, people who have expertise in school safety, and people who have expertise in video violence.

We have a culture of violence and we have a whole generation who basically has been de-sensitized. And if you go around and talk to the young people today, it’s just is what it is. And we’ve got to find out how we can change and reverse that.

We also need to protect legal gun owners. Legal gun owners, like myself and Pat, who basically cherish the Second Amendment rights that we have, and we have done that also.

But today is just the start of a healthy debate that must end with the Senate and House hopefully passing these common sense measures and the President signing it into law.

Back home where I come from, we have common sense, we have nonsense, and now we have gun sense. And that’s what we’re talking about.

The events at Newtown – truly, the events at Newtown changed us all. It changed our country, our communities, our towns, and it changed our hearts and minds.

This amendment won’t ease the pain – it will not ease the pain of the families who lost their children on that horrible day. But nobody here, I mean not one of us in this great, great Capitol of ours, with a good conscience could sit by and not try to prevent a day like that from happening again, and I think that’s what we’re doing.

Americans on both sides of the debate can and must find common ground. That’s what Pat and I have been working on and what we’ve been able to do. Today’s agreement is the first step in common ground that all of us agree is crucial to keep guns out of dangerous hands to keep our children safe.

This is a bipartisan movement. It’s a bipartisan amendment and we all know that a bipartisan solution is a lasting solution. But nobody here in good conscience could sit by and not try to prevent a day that has happened at Newtown from ever happening again.

I can’t say enough about my friend, Pat Toomey, and I just appreciate him so much for working this hard…


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One Comment on “Transcript: Press briefing remarks by Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) on the proposed gun background check amendment

  1. Pingback: Toomey & Manchin introduces bill to expand background checks for gun purchases | What The Folly?!

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