McCain questions why Marco Rubio & others would filibuster gun legislation

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But McCain expressed even more disgust with another effort that Rubio has attached his name to: the idea of filibustering gun control legislation once it's introduced in the Senate.


Late last month Rubio joined a coalition of Tea Party favorites like Ted Cruz, Mike Lee and Rand Paul in announcing (well before any legislation has come before the Senate) that they would filibuster it (Politico reports today that it's now up to 13 GOP Senators threatening to filibuster).


Although McCain hasn't come out in support any of the proposals (background checks, reducing magazine capacities, etc) being discussed, he vehemently disagreed when asked by CBS' Bob Schieffer if he might encourage such resistance.


Mc Cain told the CBS newsman he didn't understand at all where Rubio and friends were coming from.


"What are we afraid of? Why would we not want...if this issue is as important as all of us think it is, why not take it to the world's greatest deliberative (starts laughing). That's the greatest exaggeration in history by the way. But why not take up an amendment and debate. The American people will profit from it. I don't understand why United States Senators want to block debate when the leader (Harry Reid) has said we can have amendments?"


When asked if he could support any type of background check (which virtually every poll shows overwhelming support for but most Republicans oppose), McCain said he might. But he said that depended on how the legislation was written.


"This is another reason why we need to go to the floor," he said, adding "everybody wants the same goal: that is to keep the guns out of the hands out of criminals and people who are mentally disabled."


Another Republican who sounds amenable to background checks is Asa Hutchinson, he chairman of the National Rifle Association-funded National School Shield Task Force. Hutchinson no longer has a vote in Congress, but in his appearance on Fox News Sunday, the former Arkansas Congressman said that background checks at gun-shows seemed fair.


“From my view, if you go to a gun show and you buy a firearm from a licensed dealer and you have the background check you also go out to somebody’s vehicle and you get a firearm there and you purchase it and you don’t have the check, there’s some inconsistency there,” Hutchinson explained. “And certainly from my personal standpoint, that’s a fair debate. And again, Americans would like to see that.”


Meanwhile, two relevant stories regarding gun control were in Sunday's morning papers.


The Tampa Bay Times' Peter Jamison has an outstanding feature on the fact that even though seven Florida counties (including Hillsborough and Pinellas) have ordinances on the books on that gun-show loophole, they're not enforcing them.


And in the New York Times, pollsters Joel Benenson and Katie Connolly write that nearly half the country (42 percent) think that gun sales conducted on the Internet are subjected to background checks (they're not). That and other misperceptions are the subject of their story.

After it was announced last weekend that organized labor and big business had come to an agreement regarding guest workers - a crucial piece in the complicated mixture that will make up comprehensive immigration reform- Marco Rubio made sure to tamp down any euphoria about that long elusive achievement, making public a letter he wrote to Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy that "excessive haste" in proposing immigration legislation "would be fatal."

That led to several stories over the past week, many critical, about Rubio's reaction (The Times Alex Leary elaborates on this today).

On CBS' Face The Nation this morning, Arizona Senator John McCain seemed to be calling out the Florida Senator for overreacting last week regarding his fear that the immigration bill (which hasn't been finished yet) was about to be ramrodded through Congress.

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