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As the senate prepares to debate new gun controls a task force found -- body and our -- has come out with -- its response to the new town shooting.
Put armed guards and every school former congressman -- Hutchinson is head of the task force and he joins us from Little Rock, Arkansas congressman welcome.
Good to be with you Chris critics cite congressman that you're just responding to the last attack they note that before new town.
A gunman killed two people in a shooting.
What I value rather shopping mall and are -- and before that James -- killed twelve people and wounded 58.
In a movie theater in Colorado so they say all you're doing is shifting the target.
Well President Clinton first initiated that cops in schools are armed guards in schools -- -- a very effective program.
But it is not received.
It's only about a third of the schools.
And so our recommendations are much broader than simply.
An armed guard in every school and it is also about new resources for schools to add to safety from online assessment tools.
To best practices so the the report which I hope everybody reads his 252 pages very comprehensive.
With the armed guards just be in one part of that and let me emphasize.
Is not about arming teachers teachers should teach and other should protect.
Is really about providing armed officers first and then secondly if that's not a viable to have.
An armed school staff is trying and selected.
But but congressman I guess my point is.
If you did a hard in the schools and lord knows we don't want people going into schools and shouldn't.
Did I demented -- -- could still go to a shopping mall or a movie theater or a playground for down the street so it.
Are you really solving the problem if you just -- one market.
Well you're protecting children -- A huge objective in life.
-- -- -- whether you're shopping mall and they're already having now off duty police officer protecting shopping malls.
Should we not provide -- have a greatest responsibility.
For protecting our children as they go to school for education so.
To me it's a common sense approach that is really happening whether the federal government gets engaged or not every school district America's looking at ways to better protect.
These students at school just like the private sector from shopping malls movie theaters are considering the same things.
Let's talk about some of the the broader ideas that the Obama administration is pushing the -- -- opposes.
The president's plan to expand background checks.
But since that -- into -- fact in 1994.
Are one point nine million gun sales.
Have been blocked because the person trying to make the -- showed up on a record as either having.
A criminal record or history of mental illness it's what President Obama said about that this way.
Why wouldn't you want to make it more difficult for.
A dangerous criminal to get his or her hands on a -- Even if the NRA is right and we've had Wayne Lapierre in the -- when he says look at the bad guy wants a got a gun is gonna find a way to get it done.
The fact is one point nine million sales as -- I have been blocked.
Why not make it as hard as possible.
For people to get their hands on a gun who have this history of either criminal record or medal.
Well if you take those statistics at face value -- end.
The current system in place is been effective in blocking people who are not entitled to.
Obtain a firearm.
From getting one so that's that's affecting other question is do you want to expand.
That system from where it is right now and I think in general concept Americans that everybody would like to see.
Affecting background checks so that criminals do not have access to firearms.
But as a practical matter and I read the bill last night if you're a farmer thirty miles from ten on and you want to transfer shotgun.
To a neighbor you've got to go thirty miles into town find a federal licensed firearm dealer.
Fill out the paperwork pay the -- have a background check and then you have a responsibility.
To keep those records for inspection.
By the government and that's a huge burden on citizens so.
Might look at that is I I don't know where that's going to pass or not but it's not going to address the problem that.
Of safety in schools I'm not a spokesman for the NRA on this topic I'm strip expressing my views but.
I want -- look at things that working keep children site.
Well let me ask you about one thing that senators are considering that might work they say.
That you expand the background -- -- all commercial transactions.
At a gun show.
On the Internet if somebody has put an ad in the newspaper but you exempt the kind of situation you're talking about where it's a transaction between friends.
We're between family where it's entirely private.
Is that something you could get on board went.
Well again I read the bill last night I didn't see that in the legislation needed to Delis are played not.
-- a final measure and this is one of the ideas that as being actively considered in the senate.
Well for my view sure if you go to a gun show in nearby and -- from a licensed dealer have a background check but you also.
I go out to somebody's vehicle and you get a foreign there and you purchase you don't have the check.
There -- some inconsistency there and certainly.
For my personal standpoint.
That's a fair debate.
And again Americans -- like to see that but let's don't put the burdens on.
-- -- -- -- Let's -- -- and also we do need to make the system better.
The senate bill does provide -- cities for the states to put more information into the instant check system to make them more effective and that's a step in right direction.
But then again I just wanna make it clear and I understand you're not a spokesman for the -- are right although they did appoint you to run this task force.
-- on school safety you're saying that you would support expanding the background -- to include.
Non dealer sales at gun shows and also for instance sales on the Internet which are now not cover.
Well I can't speak to all of those just because.
You know it's all of the fine print these are very difficult things to accomplish an objective without burdening.
The average citizen and and bring in the government -- intrusive -- into their lives but we also.
We and so I think you you have to look at the language -- could look certainly at the gun shows and the the sales that surround bat in that environment.
If weekend make sure that there's a copper hand -- Check -- we keep criminals from obtaining guns in that environment in that those checks would seem appropriate.
Let me ask you about this because instead of expanding background -- the NRA is talking about limiting them even further -- -- saying.
And and then fact they have put forward legislation that some opponents of the president's plan.
-- now supporting.
That would say that if you're of that Iran or someone else who has been deemed to be Natalie Allen therefore what would fail a background Shaq.
If you Larson said to have recovered that you would then be able to got a -- we really want to open that door.
Chris this is where the president has taken the debate totally in the wrong direction I really believe that our focus should be.
All on the school safety that's an objective that is sick can we can accomplish it's not that difficult to increase safety is not even.
The most substantial cost measures that a local school has to do and what -- you do in terms of legislation.
Even if you ahead all your the universal background check.
Bad guys are gonna get guns and it's not gonna solve the problem and the schools it's not -- diminish.
The need for greater security agents in the schools so our report I hope that becomes the focus of the debate.
Because that's what's going to solve problems long term for the safety of our children.
Well I I understand that and obviously knew -- was a precipitating event that you would certainly agree.
That making schools safer is gonna do nothing different -- The average citizen going to the movies or going to a shopping smaller in a -- round or even the kids on the school bus going to school.
Well and you can't address all -- problems of society and when you're talking about why do we have a violent society is it video games it's it is it the middle.
Health issues and how do you deal with those.
No I mean you you government has certain responsibilities.
In in transportation.
In protection education is a special environment.
But you can't expect the the federal government to solve this problem -- cause it's not solvable in that fashion.
It it's dealing with the hearts and minds of people is dealing with giving people the ability to protect themselves.
You talk about movie theaters you talk about on the streets and these are law enforcement issues primarily but it's also societal problems that have to be addressed.
Let's take take one thing at a time and effort -- the focus has been schools -- safety let's get this right.
In the a couple of minutes we have left why do you think it is that that president Obama's efforts to prevent more acts of violence.
Appears like it's gonna -- accomplice a level.
It's it to me a political agenda it's it's more -- divisive to America.
And the wonderful -- -- parents.
They have gone through such a credible tragedy.
They have not even reach unity among themselves on what needs to be done.
Because America's divided on that point but there is a unity that.
Whether it's mental health concerns that we can do better -- on or whether it is.
Providing more safety for our children in schools that's they're crying need of our country and that's something we can't agree upon very readily there's no dispute about that.
But very little is being done -- so that.
I'm discipline the president has not focus the debate on the right issue for America.
And and less than thirty seconds left just picking up on that.
What do you think the president should have done differently -- -- to.
Well I think that he should it.
Come across with say yes strong program -- school safety you look at the senate bill right now it's forty million dollars.
If that's not gonna solve any thing.
And because it's and so I would like to -- the president say.
We want to have each of the school districts.
To do more and -- -- safety distaste to be engaged in it and the federal government can provide.
Additional support for technology grants I think they open up the Homeland Security grant fund which is even more money.
And also we have three different agencies involved let's get it more organized and and greater leadership.
Congressman Hutchinson we want to thank you so much for joining us today always good to talk -- Thank you Chris.
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