Christie chides gun debate in Aurora aftermath
July 23rd, 2012
10:45 PM ET
11 years ago

Christie chides gun debate in Aurora aftermath

(CNN) - New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Monday chastised those who seized on Friday's Aurora, Colorado, shooting to call for gun law changes, saying it was too soon to use the massacre as part of a political debate.

"This is just not the appropriate time to be grandstanding about gun laws," the Republican governor said at an event in Trenton, New Jersey. "Can we at least get through the initial grief and tragedy for these families before we start making them political pawns?"

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While Christie didn't mention names, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has been at the forefront of urging elected officials to clarify their positions on gun laws and offer solutions this weekend.

"You and I can't solve the problem, but we can demand that those elected officials who are, or want to be in charge, have a solution to the problem," Bloomberg said Monday on CNN's "Piers Morgan Tonight."

Christie, however, said he finds it too early to begin using the massacre as a rallying cry for political change.

"I am a little bit disturbed by politicians who, in the immediate aftermath of this type of tragedy, try to grandstand on it, and I'm not going to be one of those people," he said.

The Republican governor, a strong surrogate for presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, said he agreed with President Barack Obama on the issue.

Speaking aboard Air Force One as the president flew Sunday to meet with families of those killed, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Obama did not have plans to push for new legislation in light of the Colorado massacre.

"The president's view is that we can take steps to keep guns out of the hands of people who should not have them under existing law. And that's his focus right now," Carney said.

Romney also stated Monday that he saw no need for new laws, saying in a CNBC interview that he disagreed with the idea that "new laws are going to make a difference in this type of tragedy."

"There are, were, of course, very stringent laws which existed in Aurora, Colorado. Our challenge is not the laws. Our challenge is people who, obviously, are distracted from reality and do unthinkable, unimaginable, inexplicable things," Romney said.

Christie on Monday took the same position.

"I think that we've got enough gun laws now. It's time for us to address and enforce the gun laws that we have," he said.

- CNN's Stephanie Gallman contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • Chris Christie • Michael Bloomberg • New Jersey
soundoff (53 Responses)
  1. Derek

    If not now, when?

    One week? Two? A Month? Three months?

    We can't wait too long. Or else, we're gonna have to start the "Gun Control Debate timetable" over again, until some time after the next tragedy.

    July 23, 2012 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  2. Mary

    Who cares what this guy says?

    July 23, 2012 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm |
  3. Mt man

    Too soon? Then when? When the NRA has had time to pump up re-election donations. People need to listen to skynard. Mr saturday night special. Funny how a southern rock band had it right almost 40 years ago. "aint good for nothin, but puttin a man 6 feet in hole."

    July 23, 2012 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm |
  4. JerseyGirl

    So WHEN is a good time?? Republicans & the NRA are counting on the typical American's short attention span, until the next time this happens again. Well, assault weapons are not mentioned in the 2nd amendment, and since they aren't used for hunting, I think they should be banned outright. And when it comes to ammunition, why isn't the company that sold this criminal held accountable for selling him so much ammunition; wouldn't this cause a red flag? I guess COMMON SENSE is not very common...

    July 23, 2012 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  5. roro

    This is EXACTLY the right time to talk about gun laws. It's been 1 and a half years since the tragic shooting of Rep. Gabby
    Giffords and others, and apparently that wasn't the right time to talk about it either. Nor was the mass shooting at Va. Tech the right time. WHEN WILL IT BE THE RIGHT TIME?

    July 23, 2012 11:27 pm at 11:27 pm |
  6. ObamaCares

    The fat cat is afraid of the NRA.

    July 23, 2012 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  7. Dave Jaipersaud

    He should go tell that to the family of the 12 people that were killed. They will probably punch him in the face because that is what he would probably do if it was one of his kids.

    July 23, 2012 11:33 pm at 11:33 pm |
  8. T'sah From Virginia

    ►"This is just not the appropriate time to be grandstanding about gun laws," ◄
    I think you are wrong – ask the people who got shot at or ask the families who lost loved ones. Christie and other Republicans know that the same story is brought up every time there is a disaster... just like the last one, this one – and God forbid, hopefully, there's not another one that could be shoved under the rug and forgotten.

    So NO Christie, we need to talk about it now and in reality – it's not political at all – it's a way of LIFE!!!

    Obama 2012 – The Only Trusted Way Forward!!

    July 23, 2012 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  9. pinochled

    Thank God I live in a country where anybody with a clean record and a driver's license can buy an assault rifle with a one hundred round magazine and thousands of rounds of ammunition.

    July 23, 2012 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm |
  10. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Christie doesn't really care about gun violence. Does anyone know how often he did a weapons prosecution as US attorney? There needs to be a look at what was done by the shooter and figure out ways to fix it.

    July 23, 2012 11:41 pm at 11:41 pm |
  11. doc111

    If not now, when??

    July 23, 2012 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
  12. Kurt

    Do you think people like James Holmes can't get their hands on a gun? It doesn't matter the law. The issue I have is that I legally acquired my conceal carry permit but according to state law here in NC I can not take it in the movie theatre because they charge admission. So basically these laws make us all sitting ducks for people like James Holmes. Enough with the laws. Shoot it be more difficult to buy 6000 rounds? yes. Should it be more difficult to purchase a gun? Maybe. Should medical records in terms of mental stability be connected with your police profile? by a touch of a button. Should you limit the opportunity for a sane legal citizen from protecting themselves?? you answer that one. I don't want to break a law to protect myself but then again the person that kills me won't care too much about those laws, will they?

    July 23, 2012 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  13. NauticalMan

    There are, were, of course, very stringent laws which existed in Aurora, Colorado. So said Mr Romney. Personally I am not familiar with those laws. What does it prohibit? Machine guns, 155mm artillery pieces? 16" naval guns!

    July 24, 2012 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  14. Thomas

    It was too soon after Tucson , it will alway be to soon to debate .

    July 24, 2012 12:38 am at 12:38 am |
  15. Larry L

    This is the standard N.R.A. practice. After a mass murder Republicans say it's "too early" to talk about it and want to wait until "a time of mourning has passed". B.S.! If their family was killed by weaponry or ammunition made readily available by the N.R.A. gun nuts they'd think the time to talk is now. The N.R.A. is a domestic terrorist organization.

    July 24, 2012 12:43 am at 12:43 am |
  16. Ramrod

    There are more than 12 pedestrians and cyclist killed by drunk drivers every day in the United States. Where is the uproar? Let's outlaw booze and automobiles.

    July 24, 2012 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  17. Sam Stein from LITCHENSTEIN

    Big mouth Christie,..should go munch on a few donuts,and leave the adults to discuss gun control. The time to discuss should have been last week,.. last month,.. last year,.. you get my drift? New Jersey should turf this buffoon.

    July 24, 2012 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  18. Republican who supports President Obama

    Too soon. For some it is too late. Sorry but the fact is that there are faults that must be rectified.

    July 24, 2012 01:09 am at 1:09 am |
  19. DocHollywood

    Grandstanding? Really, Christie? Were they "grandstanding" the day after 9-11 when they started formulating things like the Patriot Act? TSA? Invading Iraq? Oh, I forgot, you're sucking at the teat of the NRA, so anything there would be 'grandstanding'. I see.

    July 24, 2012 01:13 am at 1:13 am |
  20. Logic N LA

    It is definitely not too soon. It is vastly past due to eliminate certain weapons from public use. It is time to limit bullet purchases and it is time to make these fringe groups give up their store of weapons.
    These zealots are not just using their Second ammendment rights, they are taking away our freedoms and safety.

    July 24, 2012 01:45 am at 1:45 am |
  21. Michael E. Mouse, Esq.

    We not only have too many guns laws which don't seem to be doing much to prevent violence. We have too many LAWS period.

    Everywhere one turns there are federal, state, and municipal laws, ordinances and regulations that attempt to dictate one's behavior. Many of which are unenforceable stretching the credulity of them in the first place.

    July 24, 2012 02:08 am at 2:08 am |
  22. Sam

    I'll have to agree with the fat man.

    July 24, 2012 02:21 am at 2:21 am |
  23. Orwell sees it, again & again

    No debate on guns, there shall be never time, until Christie okays it.
    Just obey him, buy guns, because a personal armory is your most important possession.

    July 24, 2012 02:25 am at 2:25 am |
  24. cali ha ha

    With Americas short attention span they know you will forget. Same play but it works

    July 24, 2012 02:34 am at 2:34 am |
  25. Steve

    Christie the stand in...Bloomberg knows the time is now. Watch the Piers Morgan/Boomberg discussion. How long since Virginia Tech? How long since Gabby? How long since Columbine? Exactly how long do you want everyone to wait? (answer: Until the memory fades)

    July 24, 2012 02:43 am at 2:43 am |
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