Sen. Cory Booker just revealed that if he is elected president in 2020, federal firearms licenses would be required of every single gun owner in America.
But the New Jersey Democrat and 2020 contender was not as clear about whether those who refuse to surrender lawfully purchased firearms will be facing prison time.
Booker was asked about his sweeping new gun plan during an interview with CNN on Monday, but evaded directly answering a question on whether he agrees with rival Democratic presidential candidate, Rep. Eric Swalwell, who has proposed a mandatory weapons buy-back program and a ban on “assault weapons,” threatening anyone who does not comply with jail.
“Senator Booker, before you go, one final question on your gun proposal since you just released it this morning: Your competitor in the 2020 race, Congressman Eric Swalwell has also, like you, proposed an assault weapons ban,” CNN’s Poppy Harlow said Monday.
“He’s proposing a buyback program where Americans who currently have those guns could sell them essentially to the government, but if they don’t, within a certain period of time, they would be prosecuted … thrown in jail, perhaps. Are you supportive of the same?” she asked.
Booker pointed to his time as the former mayor of Newark, New Jersey and his “record” on dealing with gun violence, adding that they had many “gun buy-backs and even other creative ideas.”
“The critical thing is, I think most Americans agree, that these weapons of war should not be on our streets,” he said.
“But would you prosecute people?” Harlow pressed, asking the Democrat for a simple yes or no answer.
Booker dodged again.
“Again, we should have a law that bans these weapons, and we should have a reasonable period in which people can turn in these weapons. Right now we have a nation that allows in streets and communities like mine these weapons that should not exist,” he replied.
The lawmaker unveiled “the “most sweeping gun violence prevention plan ever put forth by a presidential candidate” on Monday, in what seemed like an attempt to outdo Swalwell.
“A gun license demonstrates that a person is eligible and can meet certain basic safety and training standards necessary to own a gun,” Booker’s campaign announced in the 14-part gun control plan.
Cory Booker announces new gun plan that would require every firearm owner to be licensed by the federal government. pic.twitter.com/FFC4avv9Sp
— Philip Wegmann (@PhilipWegmann) May 6, 2019
“Individuals could seek a gun license at a designated local office, widely available in urban and rural areas, similar to applying for or renewing a passport. They would submit fingerprints, provide basic background information, and demonstrate completion of a certified gun safety course,” the campaign explained the planned proposal.
“The FBI would then verify submission of required materials and run a comprehensive background check before issuing a federal gun license, after which the license-holder could freely purchase and own firearms. The license would be valid for up to five years before renewal with regular, automatic checks to flag non-compliance with license terms,” it continued.
Gun owners will also be required to report their lost and stolen firearms and will be limited to one weapons purchase a month.
“I am sick and tired of hearing thoughts and prayers for the communities that have been shattered by gun violence — it is time for bold action,” Booker said in a statement, according to Fox News. “My plan to address gun violence is simple – we will make it harder for people who should not have a gun to get one.”
The Republican National Committee fired back at Booker and his plan for “another big government grab” by Democrats.
“Just when you think the 2020 field could not get anymore out there, Cory Booker comes in with a plan to use executive action filled with new restrictions and permits on law-abiding gun-owners” RNC spokesperson Mandi Merritt said in a statement, according to Fox News. “Voters across the country will see this as another big government grab on our constitutional rights.”
The truth behind Booker’s evasive answer about jailing non-complying gun owners was not lost on Twitter users.
That was a yes, without saying yes. https://t.co/dMFHhmeKfq
— Robert Woolley (@RandomlyBob) May 6, 2019
Which means YES. He will jail them.
— SwampCrazyElaine (@Erunner110) May 6, 2019
This kind of discussion should be an automatic out for any and all candidates. Since when is going against people’s constitutional rights become a platform?
— Lisa (@kittywhisperer7) May 6, 2019
I live 15 mins from Newark.
If @CoryBooker is using his record there as his resume for becoming POTUS, he should close up shop right now.
Newark is a disgusting, violent, horrid place that looks like it was fire-bombed last week. That’s his record there.https://t.co/Zbp2HJfS5R
— BonkPolitics (@BonkPolitics) May 6, 2019
“We’re not coming for your guns” https://t.co/yAcUShVRV4
— Bob ن (@BobHicks_) May 6, 2019
Lmao if he’s President! Lmao joke of the day
— Jason Snider (@JBirdDaBadman) May 6, 2019
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