Gabby Gifford’s husband buys AR-15 assault rifle in Arizona gun shop

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The husband of one of the country’s most recognizable proponents of gun control purchased both an AR-15 assault rifle with high-capacity magazines and a semi-automatic pistol.

Mark E. Kelly, husband to former U.S. Rep. Cabby Giffords and a supporter of strict gun legislation, made the purchase on Tuesday. Two days later, Neil McCabe, editor of Guns & Patriots newsletter, tipped Breitbart News to the purchase with the following email:

Mark E. Kelly, made purchases which included an AR-15–sometimes described as an “assault rifle”–at 3:30 pm on the afternoon of March 5 at Diamondback Police Supply, 170 S. Kolb Street, Tucson, AZ.

Americans for Responsible Solutions, the gun control political action committee started by Kelly and Giffords, was contacted by McCabe on March 6 asking about the purchase. Two days later, the PAC’s officials told McCabe they would get back with him.

It was only when the media started asking questions that Kelly posted an entry about the purchase on his Facebook page:

I just had a background check a few days ago when I went to my local gun store to buy a .45. As I was leaving, I noticed a used AR-15. Bought that too. Even to buy an assault weapon, the background check only takes a matter of minutes. I don’t have possession of it yet but I’ll be turning it over to the Tucson PD when I do.

A background check only takes a matter of minutes because that’s the way the system was designed. If an individual is found guilty of a crime, warranting the denial of his Second Amendment rights, his name and identifying information is sent to the FBI. In fact, it’s even called the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

“We are simply two reasonable Americans who realize we have a problem with gun violence, and we need Congress to act,” Kelly said when testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Jan. 30.

I, along with most Americans, deplore what happened to Giffords when the congresswoman was shot by a gunman during a visit with constituents, and we join her and Kelly in saying the tragedy should never have happened.

The problem is that Kelly and Giffords concentrate on restricting the weapon, which on its own does nothing, rather than restricting the individual wielding the weapon. As much as my heart goes out to them, that kind of thinking is wrong.


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