Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called out Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) on Friday over his request that politicians “stop shouting” about gun control.
During a speech at the Democratic National Committee’s Women’s Leadership Conference, Clinton implied that Sanders’ comments may even have had a sexist tinge.
“I’ve been told to, and I quote, ‘stop shouting’ about gun violence. First of all I’m not shouting. It’s just sometimes when women talk people think we’re shouting,” Clinton said, as the audience applauded.
“And second, I will not be silent, because we will not be silenced. Not by the gun lobby, not by the size of this challenge, not by any of it. Stopping gun violence is worth fighting for.”
Despite Sanders’ fiery rhetoric on a number of campaign issues, the senator has a more moderate record on gun control relative to many Democrats. He was pressed to defend that record at the first Democratic debate last week.
“All the shouting in the world is not going to do what all of us want and that is keep guns out of the hands of people who should not have those guns,” Sanders responded. “What we need to do is bring our people together to stop the shouting, to pass sensible gun control legislation.”
As Sanders has continued to gain steam on the left, his Democratic rivals have frequently pointed out his spotty record on gun control.
During the debate, Clinton criticised Sanders’ support for a 2005 bill that created a special protection for gun manufacturers and distributors from liability lawsuits in shootings. And former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) urged both of them to adopt provisions of his gun-control plan, which includes measures like universal fingerprinting for all individuals who purchase guns.
For his part, Sanders has largely stood by his support for that 2005 bill, but conceded that he is willing to reconsider his support in light of high rates of shootings in urban areas.
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