Congressman David Young. (file photo)

Republican Congressman David Young went to a southwest Iowa gun store Saturday to discuss the device authorities say the shooter in Las Vegas used to kill 58 people last month.

Brice McCunn of McCunn Specialty Firearms near Massena emailed Young after Young said the accessory had turned “a legal weapon into an illegal weapon.”

McCann used Slide Fire, the name of the company that sells “bump stocks”, as he talked with Young.

“The comments that a read was turning a semiautomatic gun with a Slide Fire into an automatic, which I disagree with,” McCunn said. “The reason I disagree is legally you can’t turn a gun into an automatic. It might function like an automatic, but we’re talking about two completely different guns.”

Young told McCunn he probably should have used the word “simulate” instead.

McCunn’s facility sells guns, ammunition and accessories, plus there’s an indoor firing range. McCunn offered to let Young fire a gun equipped with a so-called “bump stock” but Young declined. McCunn said there’s little demand for the device and his store has only sold one since the store opened in 2012.

“The whole bump stock thing, I’m personally not a fan of them,” McCunn said.

Young replied: “A lot of people hadn’t even heard about them.”

Young has not called for a federal law banning bump stocks, but he has called upon the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to consider regulating the devices. Congress may act to legalize another gun accessory — “silencers” or “suppressors.”

McCunn said the device offers other benefits beyond just the 30 percent reduction in the sound of a shot.

“It helps a little bit with recoil (and) obviously muzzle flash. You don’t get any of that with a suppressor,” McCunn said. “Less recoil would allow young people to shoot them easier…just because they’re able to handle the gun better.”

McCunn also showed Young the computerized process his shop uses to check the backgrounds of people buying guns. In the past two weeks, the store has turned away two potential customers because they failed the background check.

The congressman’s stop at the family’s gun business came the day before Sunday’s mass shooting at a Texas church.

(Reporting by Ric Hanson, KJAN, Atlantic)