While many are calling for an outright ban on all guns in the wake of last week’s massacre in Newtown, Conn., many more are asking only for a national “conversation” on the Second Amendment. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) is adding his voice to that second group, much to the surprise of those who remember his as a staunch pro-gun politician.
Many pointed to Manchin’s “A” rating from the NRA as proof that the organization needed to follow suit and evolve in its views. (Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid is also endorsed by the NRA and has himself earned a “B.”)
— Michael Skolnik (@MichaelSkolnik) December 17, 2012
— Justin McElroy (@JustinMcElroy) December 17, 2012
Pro-gun commentator Joe Scarborough & pro-gun Senator Joe Manchin come out in support of gun control. how long till their fans realize it?
— Larry Richman (@larry411) December 17, 2012
.@Sen_JoeManchin was the only Democratic Senator to take money from the NRA in 2012. Now he switched sides.
— Zach Green (@zachjgreen) December 17, 2012
Haven't seen any stories yet a/b how Harry Reid — endorsed by NRA & in a pro-gun state — must be conflicted on Dems' gun controls efforts.
— Ellen L. Carmichael (@ellencarmichael) December 17, 2012
It’s the sort of move that many would call a “flip-flop” under less tragic circumstances.
It is a huge disappointment to see @Sen_JoeManchin support a gun ban and claim the Second Amendment is only about hunting.
— Sebastian (@SebastianSNBQ) December 17, 2012
West Virginia Democrat Senator Joe Manchin ran false campaign ads, shooting a rifle, claiming he supports 2nd Amendment, wants to ban guns.
— Mike Robbins-Backup (@MikeRobbinsUSA2) December 17, 2012
— Dan O'Brien (@danobrien1972) December 17, 2012
We weren’t aware there was ever a ban on gun “dialogue,” but if there was, Manchin’s been making up for lost time, appearing with Fox’s Joe Scarborough, NBC’s Andrea Mitchell and others to announce his conversion.
— Morning Joe (@Morning_Joe) December 17, 2012
— Andrea Mitchell (@mitchellreports) December 17, 2012
Manchin tweeted that “everything” needs to be on the table in this conversation.
Everything needs to be on the table, and I ask all my colleagues to sit down to talk about firearms, mental health and our culture
— Senator Joe Manchin (@Sen_JoeManchin) December 17, 2012
Sitting down on Capitol Hill and talking about our “culture” seems no more specific than the president’s call for “meaningful action.” In a matter of a weekend, though, vague statements like those are being hailed as the “strongest call for gun policy change in a generation,” and Manchin is being praised for standing up to the increasingly demonized NRA.
Thank you Senator Joe Manchin for stepping up. I don't know anyone that hunts with an assault rifle either. #controlhighcapacityshooting
— kim merryman (@kimluvzlife51) December 17, 2012
— Ian Aiken (@ian_aiken) December 17, 2012
…or used to believe in.