Sen. Cruz: Obama Exploiting Newtown Tragedy

The Slatest
Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Jan. 20 2013 4:39 PM

Sen. Ted Cruz: Obama Began Exploiting Newtown Tragedy “Within Minutes”

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Sen. Ted Cruz insisted Sunday that the so-called gun show loophole "doesn't exist"

Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

Sen. Ted Cruz, a Republican from Texas, went on NBC Sunday and accused those who support gun control of “hypocrisy.” When he was asked about the controversial new NRA ad that references President Obama’s daughters, Cruz refused to criticize the pro-gun group. "Look, I'm going to let people decide to run what ads they want,” said Cruz. He added that “there is a point of hypocrisy when it comes to gun control” because many of the people who advocate for gun control are “very wealthy, live in communities where they can outsource police protection.”

When NBC’s David Gregory asked whether the ad was constructive to the debate in the country, Cruz fired back: "What I don't think is constructive is what the president is doing right now, which is within minutes of that horrible tragedy in Newtown the president began trying to exploit that tragedy to push a gun control agenda that is designed to appeal to partisans," he said.

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Meanwhile, Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming said on CNN he doesn’t expect Congress to pass bills that would expand background checks and ban high capacity magazines. "I don't think that [Senate Majority Leader] Harry Reid even brings it to the Senate floor because he has six Democrats up for election in two years in states where the president received fewer than 42% of the votes," Barrasso said. But Sen. Chuck Schumer, the number three Democrat in the Senate, insisted a bill on background checks was imminent. "I think you're going to see a very good likelihood in the next week or two a proposal that has broad support for universal background checks.”

For his part, White House senior adviser David Plouffe insisted on ABC News that a deal on gun control is possible although it will be politically difficult.

Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the "Today's Papers" column from 2006 to 2009. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoliti.

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