Begich Explains Background Check ‘No’ Vote: We Shouldn’t Legislate With Our Emotions

Sen. Mark Begich (D-AK), who voted against a proposal to expand background checks for gun buyers that failed in the Senate on Wednesday, said the emotions surrounding the debate over gun violence are unconducive to policymaking.

“It’s dangerous to do any type of policy in an emotional moment,” Begich said, as quoted by the New York Times. “Because human emotions then drive the decision. Everyone’s all worked up. That’s not enough.”

Begich was one of four red state Democratic senators to vote against the proposal. He will be up for re-election next year. 


Tom Kludt is a reporter for Talking Points Memo based in New York City, covering media and national affairs. Originally from South Dakota, Tom joined TPM as an intern in late-2011 and became a staff member during the 2012 election. He can be reached at