Get the day’s best political analysis, news and reporting from the TPM team delivered to your inbox every day. In 30-60 seconds, you’ll be first to see TPM’s best stories of the morning and caught up on what to expect for the day ahead.
Durbin Compares Professor's 2nd Amendment Stance To 'Suicide Pact' (VIDEO)
David Taintor –
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) on Wednesday at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on guns compared Fordham University law professor Nicholas Johnson's stance on the Second Amendment to a "suicide pact."
"When I listened to you and Mr. Hardy describe the Second Amendment, it's a suicide pact. Because by your definition, what has become common in America is unacceptable in a civilized country," Durbin said, drawing applause from spectators at the hearing.
"I made a very different point, senator," Johnson contested.
"The point I want to make is this: if it is common in America to have a military assault weapon with a 100-round magazine, if that is common for self-defense in America, God save this country," Durbin said, again drawing applause.
Watch the video:
At the beginning of his testimony, Johnson said the gun classifications under the proposed assault weapons ban are "unsustainable under the lowest level of constitutional review."
Johnson added: "My overall assessment here is this: guns are dangerous. All of them are dangerous. As a class, they are exceptionally deadly when deployed against unarmed and defenseless people. And on that score, I fear that the conversation we've been having about this particular type of gun is a distraction from the broader issues."