Bernie Sanders says he's evolved on gun control issues during Democratic debate

MANCHESTER, N.H. -- Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders says he has evolved on gun-related issues as he was pressed to explain a decades-old vote against background checks.

Sanders said at Friday night's Democratic presidential debate that, coming from his largely rural state of Vermont, "we had virtually no gun control legislation at all, and I represented that perspective."

But following mass shootings and gun violence, Sanders said, "The world has changed, and my views have changed." He also plugged his D-minus rating from the National Rifle Association.

Asked if Sanders deserved consideration of the totality of his record, former Vice President Joe Biden noted that Sanders had also supported "a loophole that does not allow them (gun manufacturers) to be sued for the crimes they have created."

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Sanders was criticized by his Democratic opponents for the 1993 background check vote, as well as early 2000s votes concerning gun manufacturers that were referenced by Biden.
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