When asked by Jake Tapper on CNN’s “State of the Union” if he would support an “assault weapons ban,” Democratic Montana Gov. Steve Bullock said he would.
Bullock asserted people in his state and across the nation also want a ban on commonly owned semi-automatic rifles.
“If we really step back for a minute, I think most folks that, be it in Montana or elsewhere, that are firearms owners want to keep themselves and their families safe,” he said.
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“Now, there are things that we can do immediately, everything from red flag laws to closing — sort of having a universal background check, to making sure that we’re doing everything we can, some age restrictions and magazine restrictions,” he continued.
“But let’s begin with everybody wants to keep themselves and their families safe, and let’s try to find those values where we can move things forward.”
The Independent Record reported the governor’s spokeswoman, Ronja Abel, later clarified what Bullock meant:
Gov. Bullock is doing what most Americans are right now — reflecting on how we got to the point where mass shootings are a common event — and trying to find a way to stop it. Like many Montanans, Bullock is a gun owner and a hunter and he personally doesn’t see the need for these kinds of firearms for hunting or personal safety.
There are things we can do to keep guns out the hands of people who shouldn’t have them without taking privately owned weapons from those who legally own them.
In a May op-ed for the Great Falls Tribune, Bullock came out in support of universal background checks.
“Let’s focus on what works. Most gun owners are law-abiding, yet too often guns get into the wrong hands. That’s why the first step ought to be universal background checks and cracking down on straw purchases of guns,” he wrote.