Republicans Forget Whether They Accused Democrats of Politicizing Newtown

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
April 22 2013 1:53 PM

Republicans Forget Whether They Accused Democrats of Politicizing Newtown

That's probably being charitable. A source with a long memory—by D.C. standards, that is "a memory that goes back more than 30 days"—had some qualms with Sen. Chuck Grassley's tut-tutting at the start of today's immigration hearing. "When you proposed gun legislation, we did not accuse you of using the [Newtown] killings as an excuse," Grassley had said.

But he really did accuse Democrats of using Newtown as a launchpad for gun legislation. "Although Newtown and Tucson are terrible tragedies," he said on Jan. 30, "the deaths in Newtown should not be used to put forward every gun control measure that has been floating around for years. The problem is greater than guns alone."

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Grassley was following the path of Sen. Ted Cruz; the two of them would end up co-sponsoring a "compromise" gun amendment that was introduced as part of the long, successful stop-gun-control fight. "What I don't think is constructive is what the president is doing right now," said Cruz on Jan. 20. "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."

And just last week—the day of the votes!—we had this.

But the history's quickly being whited-out and second-drafted.

David Weigel, a former Slate politics reporter, is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

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