How Texas politicians and celebrities are viewing gun control

Tom Abrahams Image
Wednesday, June 8, 2022
How Texas politicians and celebrities are viewing gun control
"This moment is different. We are in a window of opportunity right now that we have not been in before," Texas native Matthew McConaughey said.

On Tuesday, another voice joined the conversation at the national level. Uvalde native, activist and actor Matthew McConaughey was in Washington with his wife to add his perspective on the discussions about gun safety reform.

SEE ALSO: Actor Matthew McConaughey addresses gun reform at White House press briefing: FULL SPEECH

Before his address at the White House, McConaughey met with U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, but did not discuss the details of their conversation.

At the White House, after meeting with President Biden, McConaughey called out politicians and said they could not be leaders if they only lived for reelection. He urged them to find common ground.

"This moment is different. We are in a window of opportunity right now that we have not been in before," the Academy Award-winning actor said during a press briefing Tuesday afternoon.

SEE ALSO: Mass shootings in the U.S. have nearly tripled since 2013, Gun Violence Archive data shows

Square in the middle of that opportunity is Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Connecticut, leading bipartisan negotiations. He was on ABC's The View Tuesday morning after a late-night meeting with Sen. Cornyn on what could pass, including the possibility of raising the age to buy a long gun to 21.

SEE ALSO: House panel advances gun control bill aimed at raising age limit to buy semi-automatic rifles

"I don't think we can standby and let our politics stop us from finding a compromise," Sen. Murphy, a Democrat, said. "We are focusing on keeping weapons out of the hands of dangerous people and I think we can find agreement on that."

Closer to home, Texas State Rep. Armando Walle, D-Houston, was in Uvalde on Tuesday, mourning with a community, and hoping that the federal conversation drives discussions in Texas.

SEE ALSO: Lawmakers call for gun reform after Texas school massacre

"If that doesn't move Texans, then I don't know what will move Texans," Walle said. "Folks that are hunting, folks that are trying to protect their homes, I have no problem with that. The issue we have is unfettered access to guns by people that shouldn't have them."

We know for certain the proposal will not include anything that infringes on the Second Amendment, but that it would include other key elements that Republicans and Democrats can both agree to support.

Jane Winter is a local volunteer with Mom's Demand Action, a gun reform advocacy group. She is always hopeful but is concerned leaders won't include key provisions important to her and other activists.

"I'm afraid that some of the leaders are just going to make little window dressings and not take meaningful steps toward gun reform," Winter said, listing elements she would like to see. "Background checks, red flag laws, regulating assault weapons and that kind of thing."

On the U.S. Senate floor Monday, Cornyn assured Texans and Americans their Second Amendment rights are not in jeopardy.

"We are not talking restricting the rights of current law-abiding gun owners or citizens," Cornyn said. "In order to deliver results, we have to build consensus, and the best way to do that is through targeted reforms."

For Winter, this cause she has long fought for is also personal. She lost her son, Kelsey Buzzanco, to a gun-related suicide at 21. For so many, this fight is a personal one.

McConaughey told lawmakers he wants the guns kept away from people who should not have them.

"We start by making the loss of these lives matter," McConaughey said.

SEE ALSO: Matthew McConaughey calls for 'gun responsibility' in op-ed after shooting in hometown Uvalde

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