- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 2, 2022

Rep. Louie Gohmert gave an emotionally-charged response to Democrats’ accusations that Republicans don’t care about the victims of gun violence.

The Texas Republican said his Democratic colleagues were being arrogant after Rep. Eric Swalwell asked GOP lawmakers why, if they won’t pass gun reforms, they don’t attend the funerals of mass shooting victims.

“How dare you? You think we don’t have hearts,” Mr. Gohmert said. “We care about people. We care about their lives and lives that have been so trivialized. We care deeply. How dare you? How dare you? You arrogant people attributing murder to those of us who want to do something to stop it.”

Mr. Gohmert also noted that major cities with the highest murder rates are run by Democrats and asked why measures passed at the local level would get better results at the federal level.

Emotions ran high on both sides of the aisle Thursday when the House Judiciary Committee held an emergency hearing to advance a Democratic package of gun-control legislation.

The package, dubbed the Protecting Our Kids Act, would make gun trafficking and straw purchases a federal offense, raise the age to purchase a semi-automatic rifle from 18 to 21 years old and provide incentives for states to adopt “red flag” laws to confiscate firearms from people deemed dangerous.

SEE ALSO: Biden to deliver speech on gun violence, urge Congress to act

Republicans are opposed to the bills, arguing that the proposals infringe on Second Amendment rights.

Mr. Swalwell of California said he didn’t understand why Republicans attended the hearing if they wouldn’t back the package.

“Why are you here? Why don’t you go to the funeral of a killer? Because that’s the only place for the killers to celebrate,” Mr. Swalwell said.

The rare out-of-session hearing was called in response to a mass shooting last week at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, that left 19 students and two teachers dead.

• Mica Soellner can be reached at msoellner@washingtontimes.com.

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