Bloomberg: Biden no 'shrinking violet' on gun control
January 7th, 2013
05:32 PM ET
2 years ago

Bloomberg: Biden no 'shrinking violet' on gun control

(CNN) – New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a vocal proponent of tighter gun laws, confirmed Monday he was advising Vice President Joe Biden's task force to help curb gun violence.

"What we've got to do first is try to do everything we can to help Joe Biden," Bloomberg said at a press conference in New York. "We sent some of the people down to Washington, and we had some people on the phone to give Joe Biden our ideas."

Bloomberg detailed his recommendations, saying he's pushing for criminal background checks on all gun sales, not just at gun dealers. He's also calling for better enforcement of current checks and criticized the system for being too simplistic.

"The whole thing takes about 90 seconds. You type in the name, you hit the 'Go' button and bang, back it comes and says 'yes' or 'no.' Costs next to nothing," he said. "It would be very easy for private transactions."

He further urged the renewal of a federal assault weapons ban, similar to the one enacted in 1994 but expired in 2004. Bloomberg pointed out that Biden was a lead senator on the bill.

"I think all of us know that Joe Biden is not a shrinking violet, particularly when it comes to crime and the gun problem in this country and the number of murders," Bloomberg said.

The independent mayor, who leads the group Mayors Against Illegal Guns, has been a top voice in the firearms rights debate. He has forcefully called on lawmakers to change current laws, despite the political consequences they may face.

Nearly a dozen new gun bills were introduced on the first day of Congress last week, as lawmakers followed up on calls for stricter regulations in the wake of the Connecticut elementary school shooting last month that left 27 killed, including the gunman's mother at her home. More bills are scheduled to be proposed.

Days after the massacre, President Barack Obama appointed Biden to lead an effort that would result in recommendations to prevent another mass shooting. The president gave the group a deadline of "no later than January."

Coming out with its own solution, the National Rifle Association is lobbying for a plan that would equip every school with an armed guard. Other ideas thrown into the mix–from both sides of the aisle–include a stronger focus on mental health issues and better security systems at schools.

Bloomberg also reiterated a sense of urgency Monday by asking the president to make a recess appointment to fill the director's slot at the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms bureau, which has had a vacancy in the top leadership position for six years.

Furthermore, Bloomberg emphasized a need to make gun trafficking a felony.

"If you break the law, you should answer to the law," he said. "This is not a kid's game."

- CNN's Steve Brusk and Gregory Wallace contributed to this report.


Filed under: Gun rights • Joe Biden • Michael Bloomberg • New York
soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. Jake Cohan

    Buzz off Bloomy. We still haven't forgotten about you pulling the electrical generators from Sandy victims so you could stage the New York Marathon. We know where your priorities are and we will let you know about it come the next election.

    January 7, 2013 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  2. B.

    Just get it done. Americans are sick and tired of the NRA controlling lawmakers!

    When everyone feels that they have to carry weapons around everywhere to feel secure, we all have a very serious National Problem that other countries do not.

    January 7, 2013 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  3. Gurgyl

    Nation needs gun-control law. Period.

    January 7, 2013 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  4. Steve Foster

    I live in an area that only has 1500 people in our entire county. Hunting, target shooting and 4H shooting sports are common. Why are we allowing this "knee jerk" reaction to a horrific crime and exploiting it so that law makers can push their agenda? I have taught shooting sports, hunter safety and marksmanship to the youth in this area for many years and nobody has ever used a firearm in the commission of a crime, yet, they are the only one who will be affected by any new legislation. We do not need more laws for criminals to ignore. Every time their is a horrific shooting we seem to go aggressively after those who did not do it.

    January 7, 2013 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  5. Jim

    All these progressives and Bloomberg have to know that Gun owners are no shrinking violets, particularly when it comes to the 2nd Amendment and for the most part we have the courts on our side.

    January 7, 2013 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  6. Bob

    The NRA is a blood-soaked terrorist-enabling organization.

    PERIOD. End of story.

    January 7, 2013 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  7. The REAL TRUTH...

    In a country where the gun death rate is higher than the rest of the civilized western world COMBINED, we have folks that espouse to adding more guns in schools and public areas. DO they not hear themselves ??

    January 7, 2013 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  8. haystupid

    there has always been backround checks to buy guns in florida, i never knew there were places that didnt have backround checks, you must also wait 3 days after you buy it to pick it up., it is a cooling off period so you cant walk out of the store with a gun if your angry. i agree with closing the gun show loop hole to make sure backround check are done. I iam a responsable gun owner, my guns are kept in a safe, and my ammo in another safe seprate from my guns My house has a alarm system and video cameras.nobody is going to steal my guns, when done properly there is nothing to worry about. law enforcement need to be more practive insted of reactive. less time on the radar gun and more time in the neighborhoods. i would like them to enforce the laws on the books insted of make more they wont enforce, as if we can afford it as a nation, we spend trillions on forcing people to buy health care, i dont think the money is there eor any new laws

    January 7, 2013 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  9. Brutus

    When we do get "Gun Control", who will tell the less then one percent of all guns carriers,the criminals,that we now have "Gun Control".

    January 7, 2013 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  10. necronn99

    Sure it does. minimal gun control. Not this crap that been purposed. Once you step over this nations 2nd amendment you are asking for more than you want. Leave this to the people not the government period. We will die for our rights. No questions asked. GIVE ME LIBERTY OR GIVE ME DEATH!!!

    January 7, 2013 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  11. Brutus

    Instead of the Politicians looking for a quick fix,gun bans and magazine capacities, they need to get themselves dirty, go to the root of the violence of our country. Poverty,lack of education,hopelessness,job training,lack of morality and our societies acceptance of criminal behavior .

    January 7, 2013 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  12. Trev

    YES!! we need more laws that criminals won't follow!! Punish the law abiding to make yourselves feel safer...idiots.

    January 7, 2013 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  13. Freddy

    This only goes to show the stupidty of the New Yorkers to vote for someone like Bloomberg and how unintelligent they really are operating as merely sheeple without a reasoning state of conciousness.

    January 7, 2013 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  14. Really

    Gurgyl,
    Really and why? Do you realize that in the state that this happened there was a gun law, there are gun laws on the books now... Have you really looked at the statistics? Probably not or you would not have made a stupid blanket statement. Chicago has had gun confiscation for years nor and have the highest crime andmurder rates! OH YEAH YOU THINK THAT CRIMINALS WILL FOLLOW THEN GUN BANS! NOT!

    January 7, 2013 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  15. Freddy

    Bloomberg wants to take your guns away but his hired armed guards i'm sure will not be effected and exempt from these same laws. What a hypocrite !!!! He doesn't want you and i to have them but he won't leave home without his armed guards, lol.

    January 7, 2013 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  16. Name walter ?

    Why is it every time someone go's over the edge mentally,the political people in this country want to take the guns away from the law biding citizens of this country!!! We must always remember, our forefathers, if they wouldn't have been able to have guns who would be leading and running this country ???

    January 7, 2013 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  17. Catdog

    Bloomberg? really? Anyone that believes "Stop & Frisk" without probable cause doesn't violate the 4th amendment, or that the police should be the only ones with guns has NO business in writing ANY legislation. Bloomberg is a control-freak that won't even allow New Yorkers to have sugary drinks. Bloomberg belongs either in a circus sideshow, or in 1930's Nazi Germany.

    "Germans who wish to use firearms should join the SS or the SA — ordinary citizens don't need guns, as their having guns doesn't serve the State". –Heinrich Himmler–

    January 7, 2013 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  18. Freddy

    Hey Bloomberg, how are those very strict gun laws doing in NYC ? Yes that's what i thought. A cesspool of chaos. Sure let's make some more laws on paper so that only law abiding citizens will have to live by and the criminals and degenerates of society i'm sure will obey all the new laws just as they do now and in the past right ? Yeah riiiiiight.

    January 7, 2013 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  19. FrankoNYS

    No amount of gun control can stop mad men from doing mad things.

    As for banning assault weapons, more people die from street fights than rifles.

    January 7, 2013 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  20. samson

    Funny how CNN hasn't reported about a housewife and her children hiding in a closet while an Ex-Con forcibly broke into her house and she shot him five times, then the cops eventually showed up and found him down the street;

    I would like to know what a liberals response to that situation Should have been?

    January 7, 2013 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  21. Lib.1

    Protect mentally ill from themselves
    and society from them.

    January 7, 2013 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  22. marty

    Does the 2nd amendment mean that spectators can carry their guns (with permits) into the Capitol while observing Congress in session? Shouldn't be a problem....capitol police are on duty. Can't get more American than totin' your firearm
    in the seat of government.

    January 7, 2013 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  23. Aaron

    @ B. We do have a serious national problem and it is one that other countries share. We all have criminals. The only difference is that in countries like Britain and Australia, where there is an almost complete ban on firearms, violent crime is on the rise. Some studies have show certain types of violent crime are up almost 40% over the course of the last 5 years in Australia following their gun ban. Bobbies in Britain are actually being armed for the first time in history. The Australian government out right admits that there is no conducive evidence to show that it's gun legislation has lowered the murderer rate at all all.

    Is it an ideal society in which we live when statistics show a marked drop in violent crime following concealed carry legislation? No. Of course not. The fact that crime rates drop faster when citizens are armed may be good for public safety but it's certainly not an indication of an admirable society. Truth is though America leads the world in number of incarcerated inmates. That's a pretty good indication that we have a problem in this country with people not wanting to obey the law. Until we can figure out how to ensure the safety of every last citizen though I for one will feel safer knowing that I'm capable (and trained) to defend myself and those around me from the violent whims of societies outcasts and dissenters. The day that we have peace and safety here at home I will more than gladly toss my weapons in the smelter myself. Until that day I'd ask the government to stop issuing stupid legislation to make people feel safer even when they're not.

    January 7, 2013 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  24. brasstacs

    It's been proven that gun control doesn't work. for example after the UK handgun ban gun violence has doubled there,Morgan go home, The US semi automatic rifle ban that expired in 2004 was a dismal failure that prevented or controlled nothing. Bloomberg is a foaming liberal hypocrite who he and his family are surrounded by armed security guards,and gives out gun carry permits to his rich pals,.. The same rights he would deny others ..pathetic

    January 7, 2013 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  25. Reason2014

    Michael Bloomberg as an independent for president in 2016

    January 7, 2013 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
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