“Shameful” was the word President Barack Obama used to describe the defeat of a modest bill that would have expanded gun background checks to online and gun shows.
The president was right on the money, but “inept,” “spineless” and “cowardly” also spring to mind when describing this Congress and its inability to get even the most common sense and widely agreed-upon measures passed.
This compromise gun control measure, crafted by a red-state Democrat and a blue-state Republican, was not even remotely close to the draconian “government-taking-away-my-guns” measure the NRA and its allies have made it out to be.
It was a simple, watered-down piece of gun control legislation that attempted to make sure no one could buy a gun legally without a basic background check. There is nothing controversial or radical about that, and virtually every poll shows up to 90 percent of the public supporting universal background checks.
Ninety percent. In an age of hyper-partisanship and constant bickering, that is a remarkable number.
Yet, the Senate is so out-of-touch with the public and so beholden to the gun-lobbying that not even a common sense measure that a large number of Americans support could pass.
While there are plenty of arguments to be had over gun violence, its causes and what to do about it, there are zero reasons as to why a background check should not have passed. It is as common-sense of a proposal that has been proposed so far.
In fact, this compromise only scratched the surface. It did nothing to limit unlimited online ammunition sales, for instance. It only asked that those who choose to buy their guns online or at gun shows should go through the same procedure as everybody else. Nothing more. Nothing less.
Apparently, that is too much for this Congress to handle.
So, if Obama’s demeanor in the press conference seemed different than ones he has had in the past, it was because he was surprised, just as everyone should be.
Despite the overwhelming support of the public who have not forgotten about the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, the Senate is still stuck on the subject of change.