December 19th, 2012
09:58 AM ET
2 years ago

Tim Scott points to 'moral decay' after school shooting

(CNN) – Republican Rep. Tim Scott of South Carolina, the new appointee to replace Sen. Jim DeMint, indicated Wednesday he may oppose any gun control legislation in the Senate next Congress, saying instead the larger issue is one of "moral decay."

"I think the solutions are not necessarily in new legislation. Perhaps the solution starts with us examining the mental condition of the person and the persons in the past that have had the desire to create the atrocities we have seen recently," he said on CNN's "Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien."

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He added that "mental illness should be a major part of the conversation."

Several Democratic senators and the president have underscored a renewed sense of urgency on gun control legislation in the wake of last week's Connecticut school shooting that left 26 people dead, 20 of them children. Among those voicing a call for change are a few conservative Democrats who have good standing with the National Rifle Association, signaling the latest dust-up over gun rights may translate into actual policy changes.

In addition to addressing mental illness, the South Carolina congressman, who starts in the Senate on January 3 after DeMint officially resigns, said the recent crisis should prompt the country "to engage an entire culture of moral decay and of violence."

But as Washington looks for solutions, Scott cautioned that if conclusions are drawn quickly, they may be "flawed."

"I know that we've heard lots of conversations about what we'll be facing in the 113th Congress," he said. "I look forward to that debate."

Scott, a favorite in the tea party movement, was elected to the House in 2010. He'll fill the remainder of DeMint's term, and signaled through a fundraising email Tuesday night that he'll likely run to keep his seat in 2014.


Filed under: Gun rights • South Carolina • Tim Scott
soundoff (409 Responses)
  1. gaunt

    Canadians watch the same TV and movies, play the same video games and eat the same food as Americans. But they have gun control.

    And they manage to slaughter themselves at a rate less than half per capita of the United States.

    Stop trying to pretend gun violence isnt about guns.

    December 20, 2012 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  2. Chris

    He is 100% right!!! CNN takes it one step further with the ORC poll. Not only assault ban, but they ask about a total gun ownership ban. Obviously CNN want to revoke the 2nd amendment.You polled what 2000 people and that is the majority. And you wonder why your ratings stink. I own guns. Do I need 100 round clips to hunt deer. No ban them. Ban assault weapons. Thats fine. But a total gun ban as the question was ask by CNN will not happen in America. Hitler banned all guns by common citizens.

    December 20, 2012 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  3. It all adds up!

    We could have gun more gun laws but tell me what law ever stopped Murder? How many murders have taken place since the Ten Commandments. Laws are for honest people. We could do something but WHAT? Neighborhood Armories to hold our fire arms? Why is a 20 year old taking all these weapons and ammunition? How about safe zones around schools that detect weapons/metal and lock down schools. We can do something but at what cost? Freedom, or Money for the sense of security ? We need people to stop reacting as if we need to sacrifice a virgin to the God of the Volcano and make logical decisions.

    December 20, 2012 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  4. Wise1Speak

    THERE IS NOTHING MORE PATHETIC . . .

    . . . then when a person (i.e. Scott) finally makes it on to the national stage and immediately reveals his ignorance. Like Sarah Palin, Joe Walsh, Christine O'Donnell and Allen West, these idiots don't take long to confirm their lack of intellectual depth & wisdom.

    I am now convince that the "Tea Party dominated Republican Party" is completely bankrupt and is incapable of providing pragmatic, intelligent, and workable solutions that are needed to successfully resolve the nation's challenges.

    December 20, 2012 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  5. Doug

    So what is your rational for the Charles Starkweather ramage of the 1950's. Its not about moral decay. Part of it is about laws, part of it is about mental health and access to it, part of it is about media coverage, part of it is about the entertainment industry and part of it is about common sense.

    December 20, 2012 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  6. EddyL

    Moral decay? This from a bought-and-paid-for right-winger?

    December 20, 2012 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  7. John

    I haven't heard any body that back by the TEA PARTY yet that make any since at all. They are all all just pay by the Rich to do there bidding.

    December 20, 2012 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  8. Roger

    Sen.-elect Scott – Yes there is moral decay but your party is not helping the situation by constantly harping on this antiquated second amendment rights BS. The founding fathers never intended for its citizens to possess these weapons of mass destruction in order to kill little children and the populous as a whole!. You and your bretheren better wake up and get in lock step with the rest of America or the Republican party, as Joe Scarborough says so often "you will go the way of the Whigs"!

    December 20, 2012 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  9. Anonymous

    @ Gaunt,
    Maybe that's because the USA has 314,000,000 people vs Canada which has 35,000,000? Now my math isn't so good, but that's about 11%. Not even close to half our population!

    December 20, 2012 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
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