BOSTON (CBS) — Representative Stephen Lynch said the young voices behind the latest push for gun control reform might be the deciding factor of whether or not it moves forward.
United States Congressman for the eighth district of Massachusetts joined Jon Keller for Keller @ Large on Sunday.
“However the NRA has a tremendous amount of influence on the Republican side of the aisle,” Lynch said.
“I don’t think there will be any one 100% solution, there may be 10 10% solutions. I know that Senator Cornyn from Texas is offering some legislation, Senator Rubio as well. So coming from the Republican leadership side of the aisle, there may be some chances of getting a bill to the floor where we can actually debate this and then in the amendment process see what we can add to that bill.”
Lynch knows well that the gun control debate can run out of steam when emotions fade after a mass shooting. He has co-sponsored six different gun reform bills but none have made it to the floor.
The work of the NRA makes it difficult. The association threatens to run candidates against Republicans that support gun control, according to Lynch.
“These Midwestern states, Southern states [have] a much different attitude towards guns than in Massachusetts. In West Virginia, they close the schools down for a week during hunting seasons so the kids can go out and shoot with Dad and hunt. So it a much different cultural norm in those states.”
In regard to President Trump, Lynch, who has met the president personally, said he deserves all of the bad press he receives.
“He ran on the claim that he didn’t know the first thing about governing, that he wasn’t from government, he was from outside politics, and nothing he has done since he has been inaugurated leads me to believe he was lying about that. He has divided the country in a way that I don’t think any other president has done in history. He even attacks his own appointees, it’s a very bizarre approach,” said Lynch.
Keller mentioned that some midterm election predictions favor Democrats, Lynch agreed that “the wind is at our backs for the Democrats.”
“But we do have to be more than just be against Trump, we have to be for something. We have to provide a vision [for] working people…we’ve become somewhat elitest, I think, in recent years and we don’t speak to the needs of average working families.”
Lynch said the Democrats need to get back to the basics.
“Politics is pretty basic. I honestly when working people are out there, going to work every single day, trying to raise their kids, provide a good education, good healthcare– when they look at both parties and say ‘which one of these parties is for me?’ I think it is a toss-up. That’s never been our mantra in the Democratic party. We’ve always been forcefully on behalf of working people and we’ve let that slip, we tend to gravitate to the fringes.”