By Molly Prince
Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) responded on Thursday after the chief executives of more than 100 companies wrote a letter to the U.S. Senate urging Congress to pass various anti-gun measures.
“Now look, here’s my starting point: I want to see facts. I believe love is the answer, but I also own a handgun just in case, and that’s my right as an American citizen,” Kennedy told Fox Business host Stuart Varney. “The Bill of Rights is not an a la carte menu — the Second [Amendment] is just as important as the First or the Fourth.”
“Some of my colleagues say ‘OK, we’re going to curtail the Second Amendment constitutional right in the interest of public safety and it will reduce mass shootings.’ My response is, ‘OK, prove it,'” he continued. “I’m interested in facts, I’m not interested in speculation. I don’t want to see people pulling stuff out of their orifices. Show me the causal scientific evidence because you’re dealing with a constitutional right.”
The Senate has faced growing calls to address a recent slew of deadly mass shootings, with the Democratic Party urging for a host of anti-gun measures including universal background checks and so-called “red flag” laws, which allow for temporary gun confiscation for individuals deemed a danger to oneself or others.
Many of the Democratic presidential candidates have gone further, advocating for a government-run gun confiscation program and ban, increasing the gun purchase age to 21, and even implementing a national gun registry and licensing system.
However, chief executives of more than 145 American companies penned a letter to the Senate on Thursday specifically demanding that the upper chamber take up legislation that the Democrat-led House previously passed requiring universal background checks and enacting “red flag” laws.
“These proposals are common-sense, bipartisan and widely supported by the American public,” the letter stated. “It’s time for the Senate to take action.”
“I find it curious that when a radical jihadist blows up a school and kills kids, we’re told not to judge all Muslims by the act of one Muslim — and I agree with that, by the way,” Kennedy said. “But I just don’t understand why the same rule does not apply to the 100 million law-abiding gun owners in this country.”
“And in terms of what these CEOs say, I respect their right to have an opinion, but I don’t pay any attention to them,” he continued. “A lot of these guys, they’re the ones that tanked the economy in .”
The Louisiana senator argued that while corporations have the right to be involved in political issues, they have yet to make a persuasive argument for why American’s should have certain rights taken away.
“Most of these CEOs — not all of them, but most of them — they think they are the smartest guy in the room or gal in the room and they’ve got their eye on the bottom line and, you know, I treat it like any other letter,” Kennedy said. “And about that poll, first, I have got to see the poll that say what folks say they say. I know how to write a poll question. I can make a poll walk, talk, and whistle the Battle Hymn of the Republic.”
“Number two, let’s suppose that the polls are right — we have a Bill of Rights not to protect the majority, but to protect the minority,” he continued. “The Bill of Rights doesn’t protect the high school quarterback or the prom queen, it protects people who aren’t as popular.”