Advocates on Capitol Hill said that tragic incident, even one that affected House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA), won’t prompt a serious new discussion of gun control.
One year ago, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) sprang into action almost immediately after the gun massacre at an Orlando nightclub — accusing Congress of an “unconscionable deafening silence” and launching a 15-hour filibuster on the Senate floor. The gun-control advocate who once argued that lawmakers should act “within an hour of a shooting” didn’t propose anything after yesterday’s shooting at a congressional baseball practice in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., Politico reports. One tragic incident, he acknowledged, won’t move the needle, even one that affected House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA).
Yesterday’s shooting that injured Scalise and four others horrified Capitol Hill, which has cycled through repeated rounds of tense battles over gun policy after mass shootings. Democrats didn’t want to stand accused of politicizing a shooting that injured a colleague and friend. They acknowledged that if the shooting of another colleague — former Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-AZ) — and the mass shooting in Newtown didn’t move the dial, this won’t either. Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin of Illinois, the No. 2 Senate Democrat and another advocate of stricter gun laws, spoke about a “feeling of resignation” for his party in the gun debate. “Until there’s significant changes around the country or within Congress, we know each other’s positions and we know they don’t change,” Durbin said. “There’s a fatigue. We know each other’s arguments. We know what’s going to happen.”