(Des Moines, IA) Democrat presidential candidate Bill Bradley on Thursday said guns are “too readily available” to American teenagers, and told reporters he’ll soon propose gun restrictions which go beyond those being debated in the U.S. Senate.
The former New Jersey Senator’s comments came at a news conference just three hours after the latest U.S. school shooting incident. Bradley said it’s clear something’s wrong when one school shooting has such a “contagious effect” around the country. Bradley said Thursday’s shooting in suburban Atlanta “adds another impetus” for new restrictions on the purchase of guns.
“You have to finally face up to the fact in America that guns are too readily available to young people, that guns are too readily available generally, that we can protect the right of a hunter to hunt and at the same time make it more difficult for people to get access to handguns,” Bradley said.
According to Bradley, the gun control bill the Clinton Administration and U.S. Senators have been arguing over doesn’t go far enough.
“To reduce the number of gun dealers, to regulate the gun shows, to make it illegal to possess (a gun) if you’re under age 21, those are minimum things,” Bradley said. “I think before this is over, we’re going to have to do something much stronger.”
When pressed by reporters for details, Bradley said he had “some ideas” but wasn’t prepared to talk publicly about his gun restriction proposals.
“Stay tuned,” Bradley said.
During campaign appearances on Thursday and earlier on Wednesday evening, Bradley issued a note of caution about gun restrictions and other measures crafted in response to the shooting rampage in Littleton, Colorado.
“Anybody that tells you they have a facile, easy answer, you need to be skeptical,” Bradley said in response to a question from a potential supporter Wednesday night. “This was a tragedy, but keep this in perspective.”
Bradley said every week in America, 13 kids are killed by a gun…and many of those kids are in urban, rather than suburban, America.
“There’s a degree of seriousness and a breadth of the problem that’s not solved by a quick, 30 second soundbite by a politician,” Bradley told reporters Thursday. “This is a much deeper issue for us.”