March 19th, 2013
07:11 PM ET
1 year ago

Feinstein on assault weapons ban: 'I’m not going to lay down and play dead'

(CNN) – Sen. Dianne Feinstein said Tuesday she’s not going to stop fighting to get a vote on her proposed ban on semi-automatic firearms modeled after military assault weapons, hours after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said that the measure has no chance of passing the chamber.

“This is very important to me. And I’m not going to lay down and play dead,” Feinstein, D-California, said on CNN’s “The Situation Room.”

Reid, D-Nevada, told reporters he won't keep the proposed ban in gun legislation heading to the full Senate for consideration because including it would guarantee the measure would be blocked by a Republican filibuster.

But he said he wants to ensure a vote on the ban will still take place.

The ban has been fiercely opposed by the National Rifle Association, Republicans and some Democrats would get fewer than 40 votes, Reid said, far below the threshold needed to defeat a filibuster or pass the Senate.

Instead, Feinstein could propose the ban as an amendment to the gun legislation on the Senate floor in order to get a vote on it, Reid said.

Reid's move doesn't come as a surprise as he has signaled for weeks he would only allow a vote on an assault weapons amendment.

"I have to get something on the floor," Reid said.

Feinstein said she was "disappointed" with Reid's decision not to include it in a package, which he told her about in a private meeting on Monday.

“Senator Reid told me is that I would have an opportunity for a vote. I take him at his word,” she said.

“Not to give me a vote on this would be a major betrayal of trust, as I would see it,” she later added.

Reid said he would schedule floor debate shortly after the Senate returns from its upcoming recess in April.

– CNN's Ted Barrett, Tom Cohen and Ashley Killough contributed to this report.

Watch The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer weekdays at 4pm to 6pm ET and Saturdays at 6pm ET. For the latest from The Situation Room click here.

soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. Alan

    Ms. Feinstein – I admire your World Class professionalism and focus!!!. Please publish, including Mr. Reid's name, all those who feel the same way Mr. Reid does. Then if Mr. Reid, as Mr. Boehner has done many times 'refuses' to allow an up or down vote on your bill, please let the American Public know. Please DO NOT REMOVE ANY weapons from your bill because if an up or down vote is not allowed, the voters of the leadership should be reminded all the way up to their respective attempts at re-election. If an up or down vote is allowed and not passed, please publish the congressional record so that the voters of the representatives will know and NOT re-elect those who favor mass killings using weapons only those who are in our armed forces or police forces should operate. It's not a 2nd Amendment issues as the NRA lies about daily, its about 'We The People" and our right to live without fear of mass killings in public places like Newtown, Aurora and Columbine. PLEASE DO NOT GIVE UP!

    March 19, 2013 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  2. Dennis Madden

    Diane:
    Maybe you need to think a bit before you jump off the cliff. There are pleanty of laws out there. Just put on your badge and go enforce the ones that we have. We have tougher laws in Ca. then what you are trying to pass and we have people killing each other every day here. Pass all the laws you want, but until you can back up what you pass you might just go get your hair and nails done.

    March 19, 2013 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  3. Patrick in Wisconsin

    I'm not necessarily for the ban, but I have a question for all you gun-nuts. Why, unless you've served in the military and/or law enforcement, would you EVER need to have your hands on an assault rifle?

    March 19, 2013 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  4. TonyG

    Roll over Feinstein, we are tired of you crap to take over out 2nd Amendment right. Go back to CA and impose all your crap on them . . . the rest of us DO NOT WANT IT. You are no authority on anything . . .in spite of what you thin of yourself.

    March 19, 2013 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  5. Canuck

    Many Americans appear to value their gun laws more than the lives of their children.Shameful.

    March 19, 2013 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  6. Steve- Illinois

    Like she ever believed Harry would put the lives of children ahead of his maintaining the Senate Majority leader title. LOL Politics is an ugly business, ain't it Di?

    March 19, 2013 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  7. rs

    Yeah, the GOP cowards would rather keep on arming criminals and terrorists than buck the 3% of the population aligned with the radical NRA, and arm teachers instead.
    Just the case of yet another special interest getting their way with the GOP. 91% of Americans WANT complete background checks, 70% want the Assault Weapons ban reinstated.

    And the GOP wonders why they are having trouble with their messaging.

    March 19, 2013 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  8. Reggie from LA

    Come on Senator Feinstein. Why don't you just give up and lay down like the rest of the good dogs. Money says "SIT"! Good boy, good boy(s) (and girls). NRA says "You want votes, you'd better play ball". Ain't that right boys? Now roll over. There ya' go. What's the point? They wanna see themselves in the mirror and in their pics showing themselves with awesome firepower. OooooWee! "Look at them biceps (as lthey ook all threatnin') Oh yeaahh!" Sad commentary on cowards and how money and influence work. Are you smart enough to see it, America? I hope so. Bless you Senator Feinstein. You and SOME others will have really tried hard. Tough proposition tamping down hate, arrogance and fear.

    March 19, 2013 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  9. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Good for you Senator... Thank you for fighting the right wing imbeciles!

    March 19, 2013 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  10. Len

    It is a shame that we are controlled by the N R A. A new bumper sticker should read.

    AMERICA: Were Guns are Sacred and Life is Cheap!

    March 19, 2013 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  11. Brian

    You're kidding me she actually said she, "...wasn't going to play dead!"

    If anyone is playing dead, she is...even the 'biters' on Walking Dead have more life in them. The world will be a much more enjoyable place when Feinstein gets to old to live.

    March 19, 2013 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  12. hkirwin

    Diane needs to be put out to pasture. Is she still crying?

    March 19, 2013 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  13. Gee

    Feinstien; please lay down and play dead and leave us law abiding citizens alone!!! Just go away...

    March 19, 2013 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  14. benewhouse

    Feinstein for President.

    The rest of these people are worthless cretins.

    March 19, 2013 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  15. Bobert

    A vague ban on weapons that won't reduce violent crime. No thanks.

    March 19, 2013 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  16. Megamimi

    Ms. Feinstein is naive and pig headed. Semi automatic weapons are not the problem. A society that glorifies violence, that fails to acknowledge the mentally ill do not behave in a sane manner, that fails to understand that a well armed civilian militia are the country's best defense against enemies domestic and foreign,, is the problem and Ms. Feinstein is just of of its spokespersons.

    March 19, 2013 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  17. PaulG

    Nobody wants your AWB lady, now please go away.

    March 19, 2013 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  18. Nicholas Smith

    Wake up Feinstein. The Senate is not a game. Stop playing and do your job you were elected to do, and that is defend the country, not disarm it. You know as well as anyone what the Second Amendment is about, so stop lying to the American People.

    March 19, 2013 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  19. jetfuel4

    By the looks of her, I thought Frankenstein "WAS" dead......

    March 19, 2013 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  20. Martha in CF

    Harry Reid has let the democrats down so many times-example the filibuster and now bringing the gun issue up for a vote. He needs to go as the senate leader. I am a democrat and they have slumped at their desks on issues that they were voted into office for. HARRY REID NEEDS TO GO.........He is not leading the fight for us.......

    March 19, 2013 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  21. Kisser

    It is rather amusing to watch Dianne scramble to save face.

    March 19, 2013 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  22. Mike

    You're pushing 80, you'll be laying down dead soon enough.

    March 19, 2013 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  23. Nothing At All

    She could have fooled me!

    March 19, 2013 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  24. Anonymous

    Get off lawabiding citizens start taking care of the mentally ill that have lived in the streets since the early 80's this coutry looks for the cheapist way to throw a bandage on a festering wound

    March 19, 2013 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  25. Thomas

    The next time some mentally ill person unloads a few hundred rounds into a day care center, retirement home or major event . They will reconsider the bill.

    It's only a matter of time and lives .

    March 19, 2013 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
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