Cruz Debates 'Morning Joe' on Gun Control: Not Effective To Give Speeches Demagoguing Law-Abiding Citizens


Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) engaged the hosts of MSNBC’s 'Morning Joe' over gun control Wednesday morning.

"I don’t need you to lecture me on what the Supreme Court does and what it doesn’t do," Scarborough said. "You can talk down to me all you want to."

SEN. TED CRUZ: Look, what we can do is pass Grassley-Cruz. Grassley-Cruz would have directed the attorney general to audit every federal agency, make sure that every conviction is reported.

That meant that the shooter in Sutherland Springs, the Air Force would have reported his convictions. But the second piece -- and this is even more important -- the Department of Justice for a long time has failed to prosecute felons and fugitives who try to illegally buy fire a firearm.

So for example, in the year 2010, 48,000 felons and fugitives tried to illegally buy a firearm. Out of those, the Obama Justice Department prosecuted 44 out of 48,000. I think that's completely unacceptable.

What Grassley-Cruz did is created a gun crime task force at the Department of Justice, funded prosecutors so if you're a felon and you try to illegally buy a gun, you go to jail. In Sutherland Springs what that meant is the year before the shooting that shooter went in, lied on a background form -- he checked, no, I don't have a felony conviction; no, I don’t have a domestic violence conviction.

Those were separate felonies. If Grassley-Cruz had passed, if the Democrats hadn't filibustered it, the Department of Justice would have prosecuted that shooter when he lied on that form and he would have been in federal prison instead of in that sanctuary, murdering innocent men, women and children.

We can do a lot on this. But it won't be effective to give speeches demagoguing law-abiding citizens and gun owners. What is effective is target resources and put violent criminals in jail. That's what I've been leading the efforts in the Senate to do.

You asked what we should do to make our schools safer, we should take up Grassley-Cruz and pass it. And I would encourage you, the next time you have a Democrat on this show, ask them why they filibustered --

SCARBOROUGH: So you're saying take up Grassley-Cruz. You're very good. You've said that, boom, boom, boom.

And so I'm going to look in terms of it. And first of all, I want to say that I do believe you're wrong on where we stand as far as constitutional rights with AR-15s. But I will say bless your heart. It's a good argument. But we do agree on Texas barbecue.

CRUZ: Hear, hear.

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